PASCOLA - An early morning search of property in Pemiscot County uncovered what authorities described as animal neglect and unsafe living conditions.
At 7 a.m. Friday, Pemiscot County deputies along with representatives from the Caruthersville Humane Society and the Humane Society of Missouri executed a search warrant in Pascola. According to a news release issued by the Pemiscot County Sheriff Tommy Greenwell, the search warrant was part of a month-and-
half-long investigation of animals owned Edward Ward of Pascola by his office and the humane societies.
"During the course of this investigation it was determined there were animals on the property that were being neglected of food, water and necessary medical attention," said Greenwell. "Further investigation revealed there were several decomposing remains of animals on the property which created environmental issues with surrounding neighbors."
While searching the property, investigators found animals not only scattered throughout the property but also in the residence, where there were children along with five dogs. "It appeared the dogs had left behind feces inside the residence where it created an unsafe living environment for the children and other adults who live at the residence," said Greenwell in the news release.
After observing the animals, the on-site veterinarian declared the animals were in need of food, water and proper medical care. Authorities confiscated 26 pigeons, a cat, a rabbit, five dogs, two gerbils, 138 chickens and a duck which were taken by investigators with the Caruthersville Humane Society and the Humane Society of Missouri to Union for proper care.
Authorities also disposed of 58 dead chickens in cages and laying on the ground around the property.
The two children inside the residence were placed in foster care pending further investigation.
Charges of animal neglect and abuse are expected to be filed, according to Greenwell, along with additional charges concerning some of the chickens seized. Investigators also found evidence inside the residence, the sheriff stated, which could prompt additional charges.