Thursday, August 11, 2011

City officials investigate photo of pit bulls at Memphis Animal Shelter

By Amos Maki, The Commercial Appeal

City officials are investigating a photo taken Wednesday by a Web camera at the Memphis Animal Shelter of two pit bulls straining at each other while two shelter employees hold them on leashes.
The photo was taken around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.
“Yes, we are aware of it and, yes, we are investigating it,” said city spokeswoman Mary Cashiola.
The city recently announced it would no longer use Web cameras when it moves to a new facility this fall. The cameras were installed after a raid by law enforcement officials at the shelter at 3456 Tchulahoma in October 2009.
Employees had asked that the Web camera transmissions stop immediately, but they will stay operational while the city remains in the current shelter. When the city moves to the new shelter, at 2350 Appling City Cove, only internal security cameras will be used.
Following the raid, which occurred on Memphis Mayor A C Wharton's first full day in office, investigators said at least three dogs had starved to death while in the shelter's care. Disturbing photos of one of the starved animals sparked outrage in the community.

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