Former volunteers allege mistreatment of animals at Shelby County shelter
Former volunteers at a county-run animal shelter in Shelbyville claim officials are covering up the mistreatment of dogs, dating back at least two years.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Former volunteers at a county-run animal shelter in Shelbyville claim officials are covering up the mistreatment of dogs, dating back at least two years.
The Shelby County Animal Care Coalition is filing a lawsuit against the Shelby County Animal Shelter.
The suit pertains to the “continued denial of access to public records sought by our clients following the horrific, well-documented abuses of animals in the Shelter in 2013-2014”.
Director of the Care Coalition, Vicki Moore, volunteered at the shelter from Dec. 2013 to May 2014.
She says pictures taken during that time depict malnourished animals with bleeding paws, chemical burns, skin conditions and other injuries.
Moore says the advocacy group was denied access to public records.
"We saw a lot of improprieties, things going on that we didn't like,” said Moore. “We wanted to see for ourselves so we put in an open records request for the cameras and the hard drive was deleted."
The shelter’s director, Leon Federle, says the video was not tampered with.
Officials say they've always complied with the open records requests.
"We have performed so many open records and a lot of it’s really time consuming,” said Bradley King, Animal Control Supervisor. "The leader of this group, the coalition, came in with her I.T. guy and was given total access."
Federle says the mistreated dogs in the photos are rescues.
“We had a hoarding case where we rescued a total of 60 dogs,” he said. “Some of those dogs had burns on their foot pads, they didn’t get the urine burns from us.”
Moore says she doesn't believe the mistreatment is happening anymore but still plans to move forward with the suit.
"We’ve had at least 3 private meetings with the judge in regards to this issue, and he promised us change and it didn’t happen,” she said. “We feel like we've been shut out and there are still some issues that we're concerned about."
Shelter officials maintain all animals are well cared for.
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