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Sunday, Jul 31, 2005County: Stark
Disposition: Not Charged
Abuser names unreleased
A house cleanup turned into a gruesome discovery for some workers in Massillon, when complaints about a house overrun with cats led authorities to find much more.
A meter reader first reported the overwhelming smell coming from an Edwin Avenue house, and when Massillon Health Commissioner Terri Argent peeked inside, she could hardly believe it.
"The trash was clear up to the window sill - the cats were sitting on top of the pile. There was a rug on top of the pile and the cats were sitting on top of that," said Argent.
Neighbors also say it's been unbearable living nearby since they often pick up the odor.
The owner of the home has been cooperating fully, so now a specialized company has undertaken the enormous job of cleaning up.
Workers have filled up two Dumpsters so far with items from inside the house.
The most unsettling thing for the cleaners is that as the company began its job, they also began to find the bodies of the cats.
Argent said the cleaners told her they've found about 27 dead cats both in and outside the home.
"But most of them are in a skeletal state, so they'd evidently been there quite a while -- nothing's recent," said Argent.
Because of that, autopsies on the cats are impossible, so it would be difficult to bring animal abuse charges.
As for the house itself, once the cleanup is finished, which could end up costing thousands of dollars, the owner will have to decide whether or not to spend thousands more to fix the place up, or simply tear it down.
Argent said that since the owner has cooperated and the home is being cleaned up, her department is not expected to file charges either.
- NewsNet5 via Yahoo! News, Wed, 10 Aug 2005
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