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Youngstown, Cat Ladies reach settlement; shelter reopens Monday

Published: Sun, October 31, 2010 @ 12:42 p.m.

By Elise Franco



A settlement with the city prosecutor helped the Cat Ladies Society get its facility reopened without facing criminal charges.

Since mid-September, Jay Macejko, Youngstown city prosecutor, has been reviewing evidence on allegations that animal cruelty was occurring at the 2217 Mahoning Ave. shelter.

On Sept. 15, Animal Charity seized 83 cats from the Cat Ladies Society after completing its own investigation.

Macejko said Thursday that he and Atty. Damian Billack, who represents Cat Ladies’ volunteer Kimm Koocher, came to a written settlement on Oct. 25 allowing the shelter to reopen Monday.

The prosecutor said Animal Charity took photos of every cat seized, so he was able to see the condition of each animal.

“Everyone feels this isn’t a typical animal-cruelty investigation ... There were allegations against an agency whose expressed purpose is to care for animals,” he said. “It seemed obvious that there was the possibility of criminal conduct. It was not an overwhelming situation, but indications were there.”

Macejko said the agreement stipulates terms the cat Ladies Society will have to follow to remain open.

Read the full story Monday in The Vindicator and on Vindy.com.


1Werecat(75 comments)posted 5 years, 8 months ago

Everybody saw the animals - on the video footage taken just before the raid when they were relaxed and happy in the shelter. None of those cats looked particularly ill to me. The photographs taken of the cats by Animal Charity were taken after the cats were chased around the shelter by strangers, stuffed 7 and 8 to a carrier and thrown into the back of an open pickup truck to be bounced across town. Then most of them sat in those carriers for hours before they were removed, photographed and killed.

What Animal Charity continually fails to grasp is that The Cat Ladies Society took in and treated sick animals. Of course there were cats with ailments - there were also cats that had been treated and recovered from their sicknesses. Cat Ladies Society is the only place in this area where a sick or injured cat stands a chance.

The real problem here is that kill shelters like Animal Charity don't want no-kill efforts to succeed. If a group of handicapped old ladies in a home-made shelter make a success of no-kill, what does that say about Animal Charities in their million-dollar killing bottle?

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21970mach1(1005 comments)posted 5 years, 8 months ago

"The real problem here is that kill shelters like Animal Charity don't want no-kill efforts to succeed. "

This has to be the stupidest comment ever made on Vindy.com. Congratulations.

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3ytownoh330(14 comments)posted 5 years, 8 months ago

Good luck ladies!

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4peedymom(13 comments)posted 5 years, 8 months ago

1970mach1 I have read previous comments from you and expect no less than the drivel you posted. Research the situtation before commenting. Kill shelters do feel that their way of doing businnes is the right way. They are so stuck in the past that they can't imagine any other way of controlling the animal population other than killing. They resent anyone else who has a different solution. Then they have the nerve to post on their sites their "success stories", the animals that actually managed to be adopted. They never list or count the animals that were killed because there was no room in the shelter or needed vet care. They are actually promoting the disposabilty of companion animals. When someone needs to relinquish a pet, they feel much better about themselves that they took the trouble to take the pet to "shelter". Yet in all probability, that pet will be killed, the owners just don't need to be involved in the death. Anyone who actually cares about this issue should go check out the "best friends" web site and read the many articles about no-kill shelters.

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5Ytownproud77(1 comment)posted 5 years, 8 months ago

...so where is the accountability for the euthanizations by Animal Charity/Humane Society? Obviously with the shelter re-opening and no charges filed the outcome was not as derogatory as they hoped but the fact remains the AC/HS put all those animals to death! Why? Could it be b/c they lacked the resources to treat/handle them once they got them? For whatever reason, that's terrible, especially for an agency with the word "humane" in their name.

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