Elizabethtown animal rescue facing 91 counts of animal abuse

A July inspection of Elizabethtown animal rescue Always Faithful Animal Rescue led to 91 charges of second degree animal abuse among other charges.
Published: Aug. 6, 2023 at 11:33 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - An Elizabethtown animal rescue has been charged with 91 counts of second-degree animal cruelty.

Hardin County Animal Care and Control said they found the dogs in unsanitary conditions and their facility was not up to code.

The three people from the rescue named in the case are 46-year-old Amy Smith, 55-year-old Kevin Smith and 28-year-old Jessica Wagner.

The 91 counts of second-degree animal cruelty are for each animal at Always Faithful Animal Rescue. They’re also being charged with 31 counts of not licensing dogs with the county and 34 counts of animals not being vaccinated against rabies.

Hardin County Animal Care and Control said the charges are for neglect and uncleanliness but the rescue believes these charges are unfounded.

On July 22 Hardin County Animal Care and Control says they received a call from Elizabethtown Police after they were called to Always Faithful Animal Rescue for a very foul smell.

A representative from Hardin County Animal Care went to the rescue and after checking out the facility, they said the animals there were living in neglect and said the rescue wasn’t up to code.

Hardin County Animal Care and Control’s director Mike McNutt said the conditions were unsanitary.

“Oh yeah, they were living in neglect and just wasn’t up to code,” McNutt said. “You know it needs to be clean, food and water and clean cages.”

WAVE News went to E-town to visit Always Faithful Animal Rescue to ask them about the charges.

They said they had no comment but do not believe the charges will stick.

They were walking one of their dogs outside when our crews arrived and were making their cleaning rounds.

According to The News-Enterprise, an Elizabethtown newspaper, one of the rescue’s volunteers, Amy Smith, said that when someone from the animal care and center came, she was doing her cleaning rotations with the dogs. Smith said she was cleaning their cages and taking them out and hadn’t gotten to all of them yet.

Smith told the paper she works well into the night to take care of the dogs and doesn’t believe that night’s mess warrants being charged for animal abuse.

McNutt said they didn’t seize the animals and are working with the rescue to get them up to code.

“We didn’t feel it was life-threatening, but stuff just wasn’t up to code and it needed to be changed,” said McNutt.

The rescue is still running and says they’re working to get up to code.

Second-degree animal cruelty is considered a Class A misdemeanor and is punishable by up to one year in jail on each count if convicted.

The three workers charged will be in Hardin District Court Monday, Aug. 7 at 8:45 a.m.