So this happened: Cockatoo on trial for screaming obscenities

When RI resident Lynne Taylor and her former husband, Craig Fontaine ended things, they, as many divorced couples do, moved into separate houses… 50 feet away from each other. Healthy? Not even close. Shockingly enough, the situation did not lead to a pleasant, neighborly relationship or a sitcom.

It appears that Taylor, who lived alone with her pet cockatoo, trained the bird to scream obscenities, including “f*cking whore” and “f*ck off,” and then apparently allowed the bird to direct these remarks toward Fontaine’s new girlfriend, Kathleen Melker. This is not the first problem to arise between the neighbors. There is a three-inch binder of police reports and complaints, including an incident where someone spray-painted a mural of a cockatoo on the side of a structure near Taylor’s house.

The defense lawyer (sporting a cockatoo spangled tie) failed to convince the judge that Taylor should not have to pay the $15 fine issued to her for violating animal noise laws. Melker was pleased with the outcome and told reporters that, ”the evidence spoke for itself. The bird spoke for itself.”

The bird was not available for comment.