Animal Abuse Reported In Metcalf –

METCALF, IL. (ECWd) –

On January 11, 2014, the Edgar County Sheriff’s Office was called to report possible animal abuse in Metcalf, Illinois. The report was made by the property owner.

The owner had entered into an owner financed sale of the house to “The former residents”, who had apparently decided to move out without notifying anyone, and leaving their excess animals without food, water, or heat.

Neighbors had noticed water coming out of the house and called the owner. On further investigation, they found dead animals and a basement with almost 5 feet of water in it. This was a result of them moving without having the water shut off, causing the pipes to burst.

Abused-dead animals in Metcalf

-The 2 birds were in aquariums, nothing to perch on, no bird cage.
-The 5-6 ft snake is approximate in size. The 6 inches of tail was under the bowl and all meat and skin already gone leaving only the bone structure of vertebrae and tail. It must have been at least 10 inches in circumference in the center of the body.
-One rabbit was outside the large tub laying on its belly.
-The other rabbit was still in the tub between the side of tub and what looked like a litter box.
-A large lizard type reptile was in an aquarium barely big enough to house him and with no room to move around.
-The small lizard or snake was so far into decomposing that it was unsure what it actually was.

The Edgar County Animal Control officer was dispatched to the scene to assist in the clean-up of the dead animals.

Sheriff Dept.  Call Here…

It is unclear what, if anything, the State’s Attorney will do about this alleged animal abuse.

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Docket #: 2011-1110: Dept of Ag re: Humane Association

The Illinois Department of Agriculture has finalized it’s report on the stolen dogs from a few months ago.

It is clear from this report that:

– Mel Elston knew where the dogs were taken.

– Mel Elston failed to get the dog scanned for a chip; funny that she followed the 7 day rule of Animal Control, but decided not to follow their scanning rule. She also failed to notify Animal Control that the dogs were “found”.

– Department of Agriculture informed her that she did not have the authority to pick up strays – that’s the job of Animal Control.

– Mel Elston knew who adopted the dogs and chose not to return them to the rightful owner.

– Department of Agriculture recommended the Humane Association be cited for failure to follow procedure and to  take steps to return the dogs to the rightful owner.

To date the Edgar County Humane Association has refused to return the dogs to their owner, which now forces the owner to contemplate filing a civil suit.

One thing to keep in mind after this investigation – Mel Elston (Edgar County Humane Association), DOES NOT have the authority to take dogs, stray or not, and they certainly cannot make the decision on whether an owner gets their dogs back – althought they effectively did that in this case. There are words for people that do things like this, but I choose to keep the dirty language off of this website.

The final report can be viewed here: IlDeptAg




Dogs again…

The following are excerpts from an article in the Olney Daily Mail in Richland County showing the mentality of their county board – and another link in the disappearing dogs story.  Stay with us, we’ll eventually get to the bottom of it all.

This is PUBLIC information and the board thinks that they can keep it to themselves.

If there is no hidden agenda, release the info.

Who do you think you are?

http://www.olneydailymail.com/news/x363498391/Richland-County-Board-talks-Animal-Control-Letter-to-county-board-members-makes-some-people-barking-mad

Board Member Melinda Hunt said the board had copies of a letter written by Mike Dawson, who also writes an animal column for the Daily Mail, raising questions about where the animals at the pound are taken, also alluding to questions about whether or not animals there are being sold.

Hunt said the board was supplied information about where the animals are taken. Animal Control officer Sandy Millman said later in the meeting the animals are taken to a network of animal rescues and humane societies in the northern part of the state.

Hunt said she also spoke with Millman, Dawson and State’s Attorney David Hyde, and ultimately felt it was an issue between them. She also said Hyde thought the list of places to which the animals are taken should not be made public now due to the ramifications that the entities may face.

The board then heard from Richard Eckiss, who said he is responsible for delivering animals and bringing back feed.

Eckiss said the board has a list of kennels, addresses and phone numbers, but if the information is mishandled it could be detrimental to the whole program and the pound could go back to its formerly high rate of euthanasia. He said that if the places were made public, they could begin getting calls from people here and they may decide not to take the county’s animals. “These people will not tolerate being harassed,” he said.

 

There was also this story in Disclosure Magazine Online:

http://www.disclosurenewsonline.com/2011/11/18/we-can-only-hope-this-is-for-real

 

We have an update on the stolen Bassetts from Edgar County – the Illinois Department of Agriculture is still investigating this case. We will be notified as soon as the investigation is complete.




Illegal Animal Control Funds Transfers?

Does the County Board think that just because they make a resolution it makes it legal? 

Below is information on potential illegal transfers of funds from Animal Control to the county general fund.

This happened at a county board meeting in September 2011. 

 It has come to my attention that the Edgar County Board has, in September of this year, transferred funds in the amount of $10,000 from the “Animal Control Rabies Fund”.

 A.  I believe this to be a violation of the Animal Control Act for the two following reasons:
            1. It’s not the first Monday in March – the only date in which transfers are authorized.
            2. Transferring to the General Fund will not put the money to use for “other costs of the program as set forth in the Animal Control Act”.
            3. The county has no ordinance (that can be located) establishing a schedule for damages reflecting the current market value.
 

B.  It has also come to my attention that the Edgar County Board has transferred funds in the amount of $5000 from the “Dog Fund”, which I think would be this Pet Population Control Fund stated below.

(510 ILCS 92/45)
    Sec. 45. Pet Population Control Fund. The Pet Population Control Fund is established as a special fund in the State treasury. The moneys generated from the public safety fines collected as provided in the Animal Control Act, from Pet Friendly license plates under Section 3‑653 of the Illinois Vehicle Code, from Section 507EE of the Illinois Income Tax Act, and from voluntary contributions must be kept in the Fund and shall be used only to sterilize and vaccinate dogs and cats in this State pursuant to the program, to promote the sterilization program, to educate the public about the importance of spaying and neutering, and for reasonable administrative and personnel costs related to the Fund.
(Source: P.A. 94‑639, eff. 8‑22‑05.)

 Animal Control Act:

The County Treasurer shall, on the first Monday in March of each calendar year, pay to the owner of the animals or poultry the amount of damages to which he or she is entitled. The county board, by ordinance, shall establish a schedule for damages reflecting the current market value.
    If there are funds in excess of amounts paid for such claims for damage in that portion of the Animal Control Fund set aside for this purpose, this excess shall be used for other costs of the program as set forth in this Act.
(Source: P.A. 93‑548, eff. 8‑19‑03.)

  http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1704&ChapterID=41

 

 Email response I received from the treasurer when I questioned the transfers:

The transfers were as follows:
 Animal Control Rabies Fund #814 to General Fund in the amount of $10,000.00
Dog Fund #813 to General Fund in the amount of $5,000.00.
 The board authorized it by resolution is the only way I know to answer the “by what authority”.
 As to defining “other costs,etc.” , I do not know the Board’s interpretation of the Act or the justification/intent of the transferred monies.
Thanks,

When I talked to Mark Earnst, State Veterinarian, Bureau of Animal health and Welfare,  

Illinois Department Of Agriculture about these transfers, he stated his opinion that transfers

of these funds into the county general fund were not lawfull according to the Animal Welfare Act,

Animal Control Act, and the Humane Care for Animals Act.

 

The only remaining question is what do we do about it?

 

 




Stolen Dogs?

This story is becoming all too common in Paris and Edgar County, as a matter of fact is has become a common occurrence in Richland and Crawford Counties also. This organization has gone completely off the deep end and the sad thing is that they think they can keep getting by with illegally taking peoples dogs.

This story, and more like it that will follow in the next few days, will make you ask this simple question – Why would the Animal Control Board even consider contracting with this particular not-for-profit organization (or anyone associated with it) for care and control of dogs in Edgar County?  

If anyone knows of other cases of stolen dogs, please drop us an email!

Remember: Edgar County Animal Shelter – is an entity of the Edgar County Government and DOES NOT operate a webpage  or a facebook page, etc.

There are not-for-profit groups in the county that are trying to blur the lines and present the illusion that they are the Edgar County Animal Shelter when, in fact, they are not.

Keep in mind that the Edgar County Humane Association, The Edgar County Homeless Pets, or any other Humane or Rescue Organization in Paris and Edgar County DOES NOT have the authority step onto your property or to take control of your dog without your permission. They cannot fine you either, that is for the Animal Control Officer to do.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture defines “stealing” as theft of the dog, or using threats or intimidation to take a dog away from the owner.

 The Illinois Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Animal Health and Welfare issues licenses and also investigates formal complaints. The phone number to file a formal complaint is 217-524-3006. It must be a first-hand complaint (the owner of the stolen dog) for them to take action.

 Now for the first story:

After talking to the owners of these dogs:

 A beagle and a basset (with a chip) were taken from a driveway in south easternEdgarCounty, right off of theLower Terre Haute Road, on approx. Aug 29, 2011.

 The owners immediately took an ad out in the Terre Haute Tribune (since they live so close toIndiana) and nobody called about the dog. Then, while searching online, they happened to find a craigslist ad (Aug 31) that had the basset up for adoption by Judy  @ 217-465-8727. The pictures are also up on “edgar county homeless pets” facebook page.

 Phone call after phone call revealed lie after lie about how the dogs were found, where they were taken to, and the date they were adopted out.

 -Val (also works at Wal-Mart) told her the Animal Control Warden scanned it – how could he scan it when it was never taken to the county shelter?

-Mel Elston told her the dog was not scanned for a chip and called the owner an irresponsible pet owner.

-There are many more lies, but I think you get the point by now.

 Keep in mind, that the “re-homing fee” to adopt a dog is usually $150.00

 If anyone knows the location of these dogs, please let us know.

  

 

The second story:

Will come in a few days and is about a litter of Pug puppies stolen out of a fenced yard.




Intimidation? How low will they go?

After attending an Animal Control meeting and a Distict 95 School Board meeting, three people – two BoE board members and another “prominant” (term used loosely) person, contacted my employers and told them that I should not be attending “their” meetings.

After attending an Animal Control meeting at a later date (Oct 3, 2011) , another phone call was made to my employer informing them that I was in attendance at the meeting and that they were “concerned” that I might get violent. Please watch that video to see if you can detect any hint of “violence”. This was yet another tactic to keep people, that don’t agree with them, away from these meetings. This type of intimidation is uncalled for and is illegal.

These are the types of people (and the organizations they represent) that are allowed to volunteer at the shelter.

I know that the Animal Control board members did not make the call, so watch the videos (animal control in particular) and make your own educated guess.

Below is the video from the short Animal Control meeting on Oct 5, 2011.

 




Animal Control Meeting Oct 3, 2011

Below is the Edgar County Animal Shelter committee meeting video from Oct 3, 2011. Below that is the proposal made by Terry Elston.  So, if your taxes for owning a dog increase, make sure you give him a call to say “thank you”.

 

Proposal made by Terry Elston:
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




Animal Control Meeting 9-12-2011

Video from the Edgar County Animal Shelter meeting.