Mid-South animal control officer charged with cruelty - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Mid-South animal control officer charged with cruelty

By Janice Broach - bio | email | Follow us on Twitter

FORREST CITY, Arkansas (WMC-TV) -  The chief animal control officer of a Mid-South city has been charged with animal cruelty.

The Forrest City Area Humane Society contacted sheriff's deputies to report poor conditions at the city's animal shelter, saying dogs were left without food and water for extended periods of time.

Roy Hamilton, one of two employees at the city's shelter, stepped in as chief animal control officer in January after having worked there since November of last year.  

He says he works seven days a week and was surprised by his arrest Wednesday. "I was kind of shocked. I thought I was doing a great job out here with those animals."

The city shelter appeared to be in good condition Friday, with clean cages and full food and water bowls. But local Humane Society staff members say the shelter has been cleaned up and looks nothing like it did.

Hamilton and Mayor Gordon McCoy deny the allegations.

"We're going to support him one-hundred and ten percent," said McCoy. "Until you can show me charges that are factual and you can support it with evidence, Roy Hamilton will continue to work for the city of Forrest City."

Gay Schwartz with the Forrest City Humane Society said the organization has photographs that show the neglect.  

McCoy says the city allows the Humane Society to be involved in the shelter. If the organization wants a particular animal saved, it is not euthanized. The mayor said most of the shelter's animals are saved.

"Oftentimes, we're backed up. We can't take in additional dogs because of the ones we have not euthanized," the mayor said.

Ruth Ann Vowan with the Forrest City Humane Society said the group wants very much to work with the city. But, she said, conditions at the shelter were so bad, something had to be done.       

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