dog pic

One dog continues to remain in critical condition after it was rescued May 29, along with others at a residence on Promise Land Road in Kingstree. Two dogs were found dead and chained in the yard.

Photo courtesy Valiant Animal Rescue and Relief Executive Director, Michelle Reid

A man has been fined in connection to two dogs found dead and others mistreated on a property in Williamsburg County. The incident occurred on the morning of May 29, at a home on Promise Land Road in Kingstree. Officials say at least two pit bulls were found dead on chains in the back area of the home. Two other dogs were emaciated with one in critical condition.

At time of press, W.C. Sheriff’s Office Public Information Officer Lt. Daryel Moyd had not responded to The News’ request for additional information and limited information was published in the incident report. The News also has submitted a Freedom of Information Act request for additional information.

Section 47-1-40 of the South Carolina Code of Law states, “(A) A person who knowingly or intentionally overloads, overdrives, overworks, or ill-treats an animal, deprives an animal of necessary sustenance or shelter, inflicts unnecessary pain or suffering upon an animal, or by omission or commission knowingly or intentionally causes these acts to be done, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be punished by imprisonment not exceeding ninety days or by a fine of not less than one hundred dollars nor more than one thousand dollars, or both, for a first offense; or by imprisonment not exceeding two years or by a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars, or both, for a second or subsequent offense.”

However, Section (B) states, “A person who tortures, torments, needlessly mutilates, cruelly kills, or inflicts excessive or repeated unnecessary pain or suffering upon an animal or by omission or commission causes these acts to be done, 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.”

Valiant Animal Rescue and Relief Executive Director Michelle Reid was at the scene. She said she was not aware

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of any decisions made on charges at this point, but said without a doubt that this type of cruelty did not occur over night.  “I wouldn’t be surprised if there was at least one Ill Treatment to Animals Section B Felony Torture charge as this case had all the components to support it,” she said in an email.

Reid is an animal forensics expert and cruelty consultant who works exclusively with local, State and Federal law enforcement across the Carolinas.  “Though I cannot go into the details surrounding the recent Williamsburg case, I can say that the dogs involved suffered greatly over a period of time and unfortunately a number did not survive,” she said. “Some of what I observed with the live dogs were very poor body conditions, abundance of fleas, emaciated, dehydrated, anemic, weak, scarring and injuries.” Reid said the dogs are in protective custody and one is still in guarded condition.  “Our hope is that this dog pulls through and at that point the surviving dogs will be individually evaluated to see if they will be good candidates for adoption.”

The staff at Williamsburg County Environmental Services is caring for the second dog that survived the abuse. Director Monique McCrea did not return The News’ calls for comments. If you see or suspect animal abuse contact the Sheriff’s Office at (843) 355-6381.