4 animal rescue workers convicted on 24 counts each of animal cr - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

4 animal rescue workers convicted on 24 counts each of animal cruelty charges

The Lake Humane Society says this cat, called Grandma, is 18 to 19 years old and dehydrated, matted, has dental disease and is underweight. (Source: Lake Humane Society) The Lake Humane Society says this cat, called Grandma, is 18 to 19 years old and dehydrated, matted, has dental disease and is underweight. (Source: Lake Humane Society)
The Lake Humane Society says many of the cats have dental problems, feline leukemia and FIV. (Source: Lake Humane Society) The Lake Humane Society says many of the cats have dental problems, feline leukemia and FIV. (Source: Lake Humane Society)
Lake Humane Society says it will take months to get these cats back in to shape. (Source: Lake Humane Society) Lake Humane Society says it will take months to get these cats back in to shape. (Source: Lake Humane Society)
CONCORD TOWNSHIP, OH (WOIO) -

Two owners and two employees from Caroline's Kids Pet Rescue have each been found guilty of 24 counts of animal cruelty in connection to a seizure of nearly 160 cats from the Concord Township animal sanctuary.

The Lake Humane Society seized 157 cats from a converted home-turned Caroline's Kids Pet Rescue in December 2016 because many of the cats were sick and in need of medical care. The cats suffered from dental problems, feline leukemia, and other feline virus issues, according to an official with the Lake Humane Society. The county humane society said the animal sanctuary employees did not care for the felines, but the defendants disputed that claim.

The animal shelter owner's husband released a statement following the verdict:

"Effective today, my wife Ellen has resigned her position and has left CK after 11 years. This is primarily my, her husband's, decision for the following reasons:

  1. Ellen has suffered significant emotional trauma for several months. I cannot allow her to continue to be exposed to an occupation that has such high legal risk in a State where outdated animal control laws and lack of state government oversight would permit such hardship and punishment for their citizens. While a sentence has yet to be determined, the damage has already been done.
  2. In public testimony yesterday, Leanne Pike, humane agent and employee of Lake Humane Society, stated on the record that she was concerned about CK taking in new cats after their 3 day raid and seizure last year. After the verdict was read, J. Jeffery Holland of Holland and Muirden of Medina county asked the Judge that this concern be a stipulation to CK moving forward."

The four individuals appeared in a Painesville municipal court recently to hear the verdict. Their sentencing will occur at a later date.

A civil lawsuit was filed in response to the seizure by an attorney representing Caroline's Kids Pet Rescue. That lawsuit is still pending legal action.

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