The CEO of an animal rescue team in South Carolina was arrested right after the bodies of 30 decomposing animals have been uncovered at her property, officers claimed.
Caroline Dawn Pennington, 47, is a effectively-regarded figure in the animal rescue neighborhood who is the CEO and director of the nonprofit rescue team GROWL, the Richland County Sheriff’s Division reported in a news launch.
She was arrested Friday and billed with 30 counts of sick treatment of animals just after 30 decomposing animals — 28 pet dogs and two cats — have been discovered in cages and crates in her dwelling, officers said.
Law enforcement had been termed to Pennington’s residence in Columbia on May well 22 to carry out a welfare check out just after they received a simply call saying a “smell of death” was coming from the home, the sheriff’s division said.
Officers entered the property and “found a disturbing and severe scenario of animal cruelty,” the launch claimed.
They learned the decomposing animals inside and identified they had been useless for a “significant sum of time,” appearing to have died from “starvation and dehydration,” the sheriff’s office environment reported.
“They were lying in their personal waste and it is considered that they died in the cages and experienced not been moved prior to being found out,” officials said.
The sheriff’s division eradicated the animals with help from community animal regulate authorities. It’s not clear why Pennington wasn’t arrested right until Friday.
Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott named the discovery 1 of the worst situations of animal cruelty he’d viewed.
“It’s appalling, and it is heartbreaking,” he stated. “This is a person who was entrusted by the local community to treatment for these animals and discover them houses. She betrayed that have confidence in, and she betrayed the trust of these innocent animals who relied on her.”
In addition to running GROWL, Pennington was utilized by the Kershaw County Humane Culture, a pet adoption centre, the sheriff’s office reported.
Now officers are on the lookout into GROWL, inquiring anybody who has designed documented donations to the nonprofit group in the very last 12 months to call the sheriff’s division.
Jamie Woodington, the president of the board of administrators for the Kershaw County Humane Culture, explained to NBC affiliate WIS of Columbia that Pennington resigned Thursday, citing unspecified individual causes, and that the charges really don’t require animals from the Kershaw County group.
NBC News has achieved out to Pennington’s law firm for remark.
Her legal professional, Ally Benevento of the Strom Regulation Agency, instructed WIS her shopper is suffering from mental wellbeing troubles.
“This is an extremely tragic circumstance with unimaginably horrific allegations,” Benevento explained. “It is complicated for any one to understand how somebody could permit to occur what took place in this situation, but there are some sizeable and serious psychological well being troubles at enjoy that Ms. Pennington is dealing with.
“She and her family are operating as a result of some incredibly hard circumstances, and we respectfully ask for privacy and house so that she and her spouse and children can aim on the psychological wellbeing concerns that have to have to be tackled,” she ongoing.
Pennington was booked at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center on Friday and released on a $75,000 surety bond.