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    Officials Say Elkview Woman Neglected 49 Animals


    CHARLESTON– An Elkview woman faces animal cruelty charges after a Kanawha humane officer said she failed to provide food, water, shelter and adequate medical treatment for 49 animals.

    Melissa Bailes Anderson, 25, was charged Friday with animal cruelty after she did not provide proper care for 15 dogs, 17 rabbits, six guinea pigs, nine birds and two pigs, according to a criminal complaint filed in Kanawha County Magistrate Court.

    The complaint said on Jan. 3 a humane officer from the Kanawha Charleston Humane Association responded to a complaint about an emaciated, pregnant Great Dane owned by Anderson. The humane officer said the animal and other animals in her care were in poor condition, and Anderson was notified that she was not in compliance with animal cruelty laws and had one week to correct the violations.

    Follow-up visits to the Elkview property were made Jan. 11, Jan. 27 and Jan. 31. On Jan. 31, veterinary personnel from the humane association went to residence to assess the animals and once again found the animals were in poor condition and lacked food, water and protective shelter and were not being provided medical treatment, the complaint said.

    The humane officer said on Feb. 1, despite three follow-up visits, Anderson continued not to comply with animal cruelty laws.



    Rachel Ayers

    Rachel Ayers started as a multi-media journalist at WOAY in October of 2015. She then moved to evening anchor in September of 2016. Read More