Two Companies, PooPrints and PoopCSI, Are Battling for the Right to DNA Test Dallas' Dog Crap
You may remember Cedric Moses as the entrepreneur who tried to convince the Dallas City Council to implement a mandatory dog-poop-DNA-testing regime citywide and then, when that didn't work, trotted out actor David Keith of An Officer and a Gentleman semi-fame to do the same.
Moses failed to convince the council, but he succeeded in raising awareness about the ever-present dog poop scourge and, more important, spreading the word about the efforts of his company, PooPrints Texas, to fight it by tracking down poop scofflaws by DNA-testing feces.
Unfortunately, the amount of media attention Moses got -- and there was plenty of it -- was much larger than the number of people willing to pay to go all CSI on dog crap. According to a lawsuit filed on Friday in Dallas County, Moses fell behind on payments due under a licensing agreement with Tennessee-based BioPet Vet Lab, which holds the various PooPrints patents and trademarks. The company revoked Moses' exclusive distributorship agreement for Dallas-Fort Worth on May 15.
But Moses was never peddling poop-testing just to make a quick buck; he's a true believer. Rather than take his failure with PooPrints as a sign that Dallas just isn't ready to DNA-test dog droppings, he launched a new venture, which he called PoopCSI.
On paper, so long as you ignore the spelling errors and strange capitalization, Moses' new venture is quite impressive, and not only because you can "TURN POOP INTO PROFIT":
We are the 1st Accredited crime lab dedicated to animal DNA profiling. We are the only domestic animal DNA testing laboratory to be accredited by the Texas Department of Public Safety. We are the only firm used by Federal Prosecutors to link Pet DNA from dog feces to convict a man in the home-invasion and rap of a woman in Texas. The Canine CODIS database in which we invented is the first multi-agency forensic DNA database of dogs. To help stop dog fighting & puppy mills using tools of the 21st century, the Missouri Humane society, the ASPCA, the Louisiana SPCA, and the University of California Davis Veterinary Genetics Laboratory have come together to establish the first ever database dedicated to combating the crime of dog fighting & puppy mills.
How DNA from dog poo led to a criminal conviction, and what it was doing at a "rap" scene, Moses leaves mercifully opaque, not that a greater amount of detail would make the claim any more credible. Nor, logic holds, would the Texas DPS have any reason to partner with a shady dog-poop testing business. Matter of fact, none of Moses' claims seem particularly believable.
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BioPet, which filed the lawsuit, has a theory on that. They're pretty sure Moses is inflating PoopCSI's credentials so that PooPrints customers will switch. Those suspicions were only heightened by Moses' claims that he'd cut ties with PooPrints because of "inconsistencies, errors, and false truths" in DNA test results and "several serious issues in the areas of customer privacy, reselling DNA and customer information."
All of that, BioPet says, is in violation of their previous agreement with Moses, and legal business practices more generally. They accuse him of false advertising, unfair competition, and trademark infringement and demand at least $100,000 in damages