According to an August 10 Facebook: Urgent Cats of CCAC, Whiteville, North Carolina post, a tragedy unfolded Monday at a North Carolina animal shelter. . Thanks to the negligence of a Whiteville Police Department employee, several cats are dead at Columbus County Animal Control. The employee responsible worked part-time as the city animal control officer who feeds and cleans for the animals on the weekend.
The Facebook post reported that on Sunday, August 9, this employee left the Whiteville shelter and “forgot” to relock the cage of one of the dogs. He also “forgot” to lock the door from the main shelter floor into the quarantine area, where newly arrived cats were waiting to be listed and assessed on Monday.
The dog, most likely looking for food, found a way out through the unlocked door and into the gated quarantine area, where it broke into their crates and killed every cat in the holding area. It’s unclear how many cats are dead due to the negligence of this employee, who has since been terminated from his shelter position, and information isn’t available at this time whether the employee will face disciplinary action from his full-time job with the police department.
Facebook: Urgent Cats of CCAC, Whiteville, North Carolina reported on Monday
“Earlier today I contacted Calvin Norton who was the man who took legal action against the county and Rossie Hayes over the illegal killing of two dogs recently at shelter. Norton got involved with county officials and shelter and the person responsible for the cat deaths is now terminated at shelter .will no longer work in shelter.”
The unnamed officer responsible was fired indefinitely as requested on Monday when Norton arrived at the Whiteville shelter. Norton confirmed this with Shelter Director Rossie Hayes and the terminated officer. Norton agreed with Hayes after talking with the former employee that even though it was a mistake and not intentional, the best course of action was termination.
The Urgent Cats of Whiteville page also stated the person responsible was negligent on at least two counts of security alone and was not very apologetic when summoned to the shelter by Hayes. Animal advocates are pushing for changes to shelter policy that will ensure nothing like this ever happens again.
While some are blaming the dog, most are saying this is just one more problem to come out of the Columbus County shelter this year. It was ‘human error’ and the dog involved allegedly rescued on Monday. The shelter is in desperate need of people to get the remaining cats out of the shelter, as they’ve been severely traumatized. The Facebook page for Whiteville will list more information, plus an updated cat album on Tuesday.
It’s unlikely these cats will receive justice. The person responsible for leaving the kennel and observation room doors open was disciplined. Shelter Director Rossie Hayes will be leaving the shelter in September, despite several petitions to have him fired for past incidents. Except for social media updates, this case is more than likely considered closed.
Click here to view the cats killed, as well as a list of government officials to contact to ask for changes to CCAC. A Facebook community page, Justice for Patches; the Whiteville Shelter Tragedy has been set up to handle updates to this tragedy.
Follow Greenville Cats Examiner on Facebook.