Case Snapshot
Case ID: 18476
Classification: Hoarding
Animal: cat, dog (non pit-bull), bird (pet), pig, rodent/small mammal (pet)
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Wednesday, Aug 24, 2011

County: Logan

Disposition: Alleged

Alleged: Kim DeWitt

The Sebastian County Humane Society and police investigated an animal hoarding case in Logan County on Wednesday. Police said they took away more than 60 animals.

Police removed 48 dogs, six cats, five rats, one ferret, three birds and one pot-belly pig from the home.

"They had no business coming in here. They're not starving. You can't see their ribs or nothing. I've got dog food in there," owner Kim Dewitt told 40/29 reporters.

The Logan County Sheriff's Office said Dewitt's animals were taken after police received a tip call from the Sebastian County Humane Society.

With the help of the Sebastian County Humane Society employees, it took crews more than five hours to retrieve and transport the animals.

Sebastian County Humane Society Director Joann Barton said many were suffering from hair loss, eye infections, weight loss and tick-related disease.

"The person that contacted me told me there was two to three animals dying every week in that situation. I didn't really want to send my staff down there in this heat, but I knew that we would have more dead if we didn't," said Barton.

Bekah Trotter, an animal cruelty investigator with the Sebastian County Humane Society, says Monday they found a dead puppy and four dead pet rats on the property.

"The majority have a lot of skin issues, and missing hair, and eye infections," said Trotter.

Logan County Sheriff Steve Smith said some animals showed signs of neglect, but Dewitt disagreed.

"They have never attacked nobody. They've never bit anybody. They're not being neglected or abused. There's food. There's water. What more do I need to do? What more can I do? There's nothing else I can do," said Dewitt.

Dewitt said she had her pit bulls registered and was a member of various animal rights organizations.

The challenge facing the Humane Society is giving the animals the medical treatment required to qualify for adoption.

"It's going to be pretty hard. Some are going to be more difficult than others because of the condition that they're in," said Bekah Barton of the Humane Society.

The Humane Society said it costs the shelter a minimum of $300 to get a single animal ready for adoption. Humane Society staff said they are going to do their best to send the animals to other shelters to ease the financial burden.


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