What can one person do? Holdenville, OK edition

(Warning:  photos of dead shelter pets at the link.)

Jason Grizzle, a dog owner in Holdenville, OK, went to the local pound to look for his lost pet on June 14.  What he found was horrifying:

He says the facility was unlocked and unattended. He says there were at least 10 dead dogs and cats in various forms of decomposition, still in their cages.

Mr. Grizzle did not see his missing pet but did take photos to document the cruelty.  He showed the photos to local media.  Mr. Grizzle told a reporter that he has worked in a slaughterhouse and even so was deeply disturbed by the cruelty evident at the pound.  Investigators determined some of the pets had suffered until they died from the heat while others suffered an even more prolonged and agonizing death from starvation.

Holdenville’s ACO, Adam Smith, has been charged with felony animal cruelty and removed from his position.  He had worked under the supervision of the police department.  The police chief had no comment on the case.  At its meeting last week, the city council discussed the possibility of building a new facility for the pound but took no action.

Based on similar cases I’ve covered for the blog, I have little doubt that former ACO Smith would still be on the job and still hurting shelter animals if not for Mr. Grizzle taking photos and showing them to the local TV news.  The fact that the supervising agency has apparently taken no responsibility for these heinous crimes is very telling to my mind.  If the police chief had no idea of the cruelty going on at the pound, he is negligent.  If he was aware and allowed it to continue, he should be charged with a crime.  Thank you Jason Grizzle for getting involved and taking action when no one else did.

(Thanks Clarice for alerting me to this story.)

19 thoughts on “What can one person do? Holdenville, OK edition

  1. So glad that he reported it. I’m sure we’ll hear the excuses soon – the ACO was ‘overwhelmed with his duties’, ‘he loves animals and did his very best to care for them with limited resources, ‘if only people would spay and neuter’, blahblahblah…

    Agreed that the police need to accept responsibility here. I shudder to think how long this has been going on.

  2. More horrific behavior from the very people who are supposed to protect and care for our animals.

    Agree that there will be a litany of excuses. Good for the gentleman who saw the grisly scenes and didn’t look the other way.

    What will it take for people to stop this behavior?

    1. I would think serious consequences, or any consequences at all would help a bit. And getting no kill mindset more widely accepted, if you’re just going to kill them anyway it’s hard to view animals with compassion. Goes against the grain to kill without at least some contempt or lack of caring, so kill shelters grow killers and cruel workers. Not all workers or directors but it seems like a large number have shut down their hearts.

  3. This makes me sick. Had no one gone there in the days before this? How did this not get discovered earlier?

    The thing that sticks out is “gee, should we build a new shelter?” Do they really think that will make a difference? They didn’t take care of the facility and animals they had; a new building would not change that.

    I am so sorry for those poor animals that died such a horrific death. The Police Chief should be right beside the ACO and should also be charged. There is no excuse for any of this happening.

  4. Fired, sued, whatever the law allows, because the law was not in place here – gezus…

  5. What happened to the dogs that were still living?? Hope they got the care they needed.

    I can not believe the Police Chief isn’t in trouble. He should of been making routine visits to the shelter if he was the person overseeing it.

  6. No oversight at all-city council and mayor all need to be voted out of office! If the shelter was also collecting stray dogs for the county then the county officials need to go also. It is your tax dollars at work. I wonder if the shelter broke any state laws as this would be one way to get them. What happened to the funds that were supposed to be used buying dog food, etc.? I hope someone is looking into that.

  7. There have been so many horrific stories through the years, but this one…for some reason this seems to just embody every last thing that is wrong with our shelter system.

    No responsibility, just excuses. A mindset that gives killing as a solution…I mean, isn’t the problem here not that the dogs died, but that the AC didn’t do it quick enough? I’m half-expecting them to say he liked animals SO MUCH he just didn’t have the heart to kill them immediately ‘like he should have’. Of course actually saving their lives won’t be presented as if it were ever an option.

  8. OMG- just looked up the facts about Holderville-
    Amongst other interesting stats it’s “Boon Pickens” home town-
    Now why is he NOT outraged??

  9. OMG- just looked up the facts about Holdenville-
    Amongst other interesting stats it’s “Boon Pickens” home town-
    Now why is he NOT outraged??

  10. They need to combine this with what Porter Olden did to his animals-more than once. There are pictures for that also. I and a friend of mine reported it. Nothing done to him yet. Check odcr.

  11. I guess one little puppy lucked out. My grand daughter got it from his house and begged me to keep it(couple days before this was exposed) She told me he was gonna kill it if she gave it back to him. When I figured out who she was talking about(Adam), I agreed since I was aware of the mama dogs and puppies running around on our street needing food. I live a few houses down from him. Glad I kept it.

  12. While I am appalled I am not shocked. I live in Wilburton Ok and our pound supervisor quit and now there is no one to routinely oversee the animals at the so called shelter here. THe dogs get minimal care in minimal surroundings and nothing ever happens to them yet when I attempted to run a rescue and DID do much better than the local city dog jail (24 hour supervision, med care socialization, actively rehomed animals food, water, shelter and LOVE) I got busted That is the way this stupid state works. Nothing will happen to this guy and in time once things quite down the “shelter” will go back to business as usual.

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