Marion County Code Enforcement Officer fired after 14 cats found dead; hundreds believed shot and killed
A tragic situation is unfolding this week, this time coming out of Marion County, South Carolina where Marion County Code Enforcement Officer Marion Richardson has been accused of multiple counts of animal cruelty.
Denise Bitz, Founder and President of Brother Wolf, posted on their website Friday
“We are pleased to learn that County officials are taking swift action to investigate this case,” says Denise Bitz, Founder and President of Brother Wolf. “We are petitioning the County to charge the officer to the fullest extent of the law. If this is all true, then Richardson has cruelly massacred possibly many hundreds of innocent cats and kittens and lied to shelter officials to conceal his actions. That would make him a serial offender, fully aware he was breaking the law. That’s why we are petitioning the county to seek the maximum penalty of five years imprisonment and $5,000 fine.”
Richardson took 14 cats from the Marion County Animal Shelter on Wednesday, stating he was taking them to a farm to be used in vermin control. The cats were later found dead. Richardson has been fired for his actions by County Administrator Tim Harper.
Unfortunately, Richardson has been taking cats for several months now, and it’s believed hundreds of cats and kitten may have been shot to death. All of these were friendly cats who only needed a place to go so they wouldn’t be killed at the shelter. Did he just use them as target practice? There were some who wondered why a farm would need that many cats, but no one thought this would be the outcome.
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Marion County Chapter Manager for Brother Wolf Animal Rescue, Susan Floyd said they work closely with Marion County Animal Shelter. They’re horrified at what has happened. Floyd stated
“I know he took several dozen cats and kittens in just the past month alone. How many more have suffered this man’s cruelty?”
South Carolina has a Felony Cruelty statute, 47-1-40 (B), that states, “Whoever tortures, torments, needlessly mutilates, cruelly kills, or inflicts excessive or repeated unnecessary pain or suffering upon any animal or by omission or commission causes the acts to be done for any of the offenses is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be punished by imprisonment of not less than one hundred eighty days and not to exceed five years and by a fine of five thousand dollars.””
This situation is made worse in that some county officials may have known about Richardson shooting the cats.
Thom Berry confirmed the SC Law Enforcement Division (SLED) has been asked to conduct an investigation at the request of the Marion County Sheriff’s Office and the Solicitor’s Office. He was an employee of the sheriff’s department before taking the job of Code Enforcement Officer.
A list of Marion County government offices can be found here. Updates will be posted on the Brother Wolf Animal Rescue Facebook page.
You hear yourselves? Some of you?! Talking about cats like that?! I don’t care what anyone thinks! Killing an innocent Animal for ANY damn reason, is cause for punishment!! So screw anyone that thinks otherwise!! Freaking monsters & demons in this freaked up world!!
To make it clear by controlling numbers I mean S/N.
We have removed most dangerous predators from our cultivated and urban and city dwellings. The cat is a natural predator that is not human aggressive unless cornered or tortured by human hands. I agree their numbers must be controlled but they are a valuable filler in absence of native predators that pose a danger to humans and most livestock.
Here’s a good read to show you what happens to every last one of these relocated invasive-species community-vermin cats that people dump-off on farms and in other rural areas in ANY location of North America. (And, as I recently discovered; in Canada, the UK, and probably worldwide — they’d be fools not to.)
predatormastersforums . com / forums / ubbthreads . php ? ubb=showflat & Number=2628942 & page=1
All you are doing is adding to the cat-shooting quotas of everyone who lives rural. What a nice waste of your money and time. I personally shot and buried literally hundreds of these invasive-species vermin cats to stop them from gutting-alive and skinning-alive the last of the native wildlife on my lands. Cats adopted by pavement-brained fools (who bought 3-10 acre hobby-farms) from “humane” barn-cat programs ran by equally pavement-brained morons. Many hunting-forums even pass along contact information of any new “barn cat programs” — for free delivery of FREE practice-targets between hunting seasons. I don’t condone this, because if they miss then I have to shoot them myself when they wander into my own lands. “Hello? Yes, I have a bad rodent problem out here in the country. Can you bring out about 6 of your cats? Thanks!” (A week later: BANG! BANG! Dāmņ, missed one. BANG! BANG! BANG!) Your cats are “valuable”, alright. But not in any way that you might ever think.
Cats that are relocated NEVER stay where they have been dumped. This is why you read reports of cats trying to get back to their points of origin hundreds of miles away. All the while senselessly destroying countless numbers of valuable native wildlife in their wake by torturing animals to death for their hourly play-toys. People in rural areas have enough of their own problem keeping these disease-infested vermin in check by shooting every stray cat they see (if only to protect their own animals and cats from the 3dozen+ deadly zoonotic diseases these free-roaming pestilent vermin cats carry and spread to all other animals and humans today).
You needn’t go adding to everyone’s weekly cat-shooting-quotas by releasing more of these pestilent vermin. “Cute” they are not. They ALL need to be destroyed. There are dozens of native predator species that are MUCH better suited for rodent control. Ones that eat rodents only and don’t destroy everything that moves, like cats do. There’s a good reason one species was even named the Barn-Owl, another the Rat-Snake. Gray-Fox being another excellent mouser, they don’t even have European fowl on their menus and will even climb trees to keep squirrel populations in check. Even the 1.75-inch Masked-Shrew, a David & Goliath success story, evolved a poisonous bite specifically for preying on rodents right where they breed. Even the scent of these miniature marvels being around drives away rodents. But what do their cats do? They destroy these most beneficial of all rodent predators the very first chance they get.
Criminally irresponsible cat-hoarders need to become responsible stewards of this planet by getting at least a high-school level of education in matters of ecology and biology so the rest of us don’t have to teach you a valuable lesson by shooting and burying every last one of your invasive species vermin cats for you.
These cats were removed from a shelter under the pretense a farm needed them to control mice. Farmers are instructed on how to train a cat to stick to the territory of the farm by keeping it in the barn and feeding it there until it grows accustomed to its new home.
However, none of these cats were feral, so they fall under the SC Cruelty laws because they were all tame. It IS illegal to shoot a TAME cat or a FERAL cat in SC unless it’s a threat to life or livestock.
Nice hearing from you again. If you comment again I’ll remove your original comment since it has nothing to do with this case.
Can you provide more information on this? I NEED it!
“Many hunting-forums even pass along contact information of any new “barn cat programs” — for free delivery of FREE practice-targets between hunting seasons. I don’t condone this, because if they miss then I have to shoot them myself when they wander into my own lands”
Elisa, great article but can u tell what a code enforcement officer does? Thanks. I presume he/she enforcement the criminal law but that would make them a police officer.
I believe they make sure properties are safe and do inspections and such checking for safety issues. I know in my area you have to have a working smoke detector before electricity can be turned on.
Thanks Elisa. They are in the business of upholding the law. This makes the story all the more poignant.
I’m one of the “criminally irresponsible car hoarders ” and I have 6 years of college FYI. I AM Responsible steward of this earth first because I diligently recycle and strive to live green, second because I provide shelter, love and care to 14 cats that have dumped by assholes without conscious. These 14 have ALL been “fixed” and vaccinated. I have accepted the responsibility for their care so they don’t end up victims of an asshole like YOU sir. It must hurt to live so hatefully.
Thanks Michelle and well done in helping cats. I have banned the Real World person. He’s a well know troll called Woodsman001. Sorry you had to deal with him.
Woody you are banned again. You should not have been published in the first place as you a complete asshole of the highest calibre.
Sounds like Woody needs to be the focus of a police investigation.
Woody needs to be shot basically. Sorry but that’s just my personal feelings.
Karma demands he come back as a feral cat.
Only reason I posted his comment is people need to be aware of people who are looking for farm cats for their property. They may actually want to shoot them for sport. Woody actually made a valid point on that. Which is rare for him 🙂
Do you know how many chickens the barn owl killed? ALL OF THEM.
Your level of ecology and biology are lacking Mr. Real World.
Otherwise you would know that eradication of one species leads to an imbalance of others.
In my opinion, the world would be a much better place if I could BANG BANG BANG bury all the stupid vermin from the most invasive species of them all — HUMANS!
I am with you on that Valorie and the first bang would be directed at this stupid troll who goes by a plethora of aliases one of which is Woody or Woodsman001. He sometimes takes on female personas. Don’t let him upset you. He wants that. Sorry you had to deal with him. He is banned by the way. I have banned him around 100 times.
Real World is my biggest fan. Or stalker. I get the two confused:)
I am going to follow this case, as I followed the case of Tiger the cat, killed by Kristen Lindsay DVM with a bow and arrow, in Brenham, Tx. 2015. The even bigger problem is a failure to prosecute; and the more that happens, the more cruelty happens because there’s no real consequences. Too many good-ol boys don’t even care to stop the cruelty in the first place.
This is insane! Sorry I had to go in and correct a few paragraph mistakes. I’m writing at the speed of lightning. Please share this with friends. He can’t get away with this!
FYI It is 100% illegal to kill a cat if you are not a licensed veterinarian. No matter where you live! I hope you are tracked down soon. Hopefully by someone like me.
Thanks for commenting Catherine. I think you will find that under certain exceptional circumstances in some states of the US it is legal to kill a cat if they are harassing livestock. I need to check this online but that is my gut feel. I think your comment is misdirected. You are replying to Albert when it should be the troll “Real World”. No matter. Thanks again for your thoughts.