Grovetown woman facing 12 counts of animal neglect

By: Jonathan Martin Email
By: Jonathan Martin Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock, July 2, 2007

AUGUSTA, Ga--"I screwed up, I screwed up. I hurt these animals and I didn't mean to," says Linda Stone.

Stone is charged with twelve counts of failure to maintain and care for animals. Monday, she was cited by Columbia County's animal control. They say she left a dozen dogs abandoned inside her Harlem mobile home.

"The floors were covered in feces. In some places it was like six inches thick. There was trash and garbage everywhere," animal control director Linda Fulmer told us.

Authorities searched the home on Otis Way after a Jefferson Electric employee reported hearing dogs barking inside the home and noticed the power had been shut off.

"It was 96 degrees inside the house. Outside it was 113.9 when we were there," Fulmer says.

Authorities say they found the dogs inside with little food and water. The animals had to be euthanized because of health problems and unsociable behavior.

Stone now lives in Grovetown. She tells News 12 she was going by the home in Harlem to feed the dogs regularly, but was down on her luck and missed a few days.

"I got swamped, i got overwhelmed. I gave up trying to clean the house after they came in," she told us.

Animal control officials say Stone could have avoided the citations if only she had asked for help.

"We'll make calls to rescue groups or whatever we have to do to help people in these situations. Unfortunately they wait until it gets this bad before we find out about it," Fulmer says.

Stone says she's sorry her neglect caused twelve animals to be put to sleep.

"They didn't do anything wrong, i'm the one who screwed up," Stone says.

Animal Control says Stone could face up to $12,000 in fines or up to six months in jail if found guilty.

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  • by rescue worker and more Location: Martinez on Sep 27, 2007 at 05:02 PM
    This is in reference to the person signed in as "an animal rescue volunteer, Augusta". You asked if these people have given to the Columbia County Humane Society...and my question is, why would you not only name just one rescue group...but why them? they have let the entire community down. How many years of having over $250, 000 of donated money will it be before they do something with the land????? They bilk people for money and do so very little. There are other REPUTABLE rescues out there...why not mention them? To say nothing of a very affordable low cost spay neuter clinic ALREADY operating. The woman could have reached out for help....there are many groups out there that would have helped, but she didn't.. shame on her. BUT, the Col County shelter puts animals down on a regular basis, and often for no good reason. Shame on THEM!
  • by David Location: Augusta on Jul 5, 2007 at 08:47 AM
    To answer the animal rescue volunteer. I have given generously over the years to animal rescue causes locally and the national humane society. I have organized church food drives for animal rescue groups and volunteered at the shelter. How could anyone know that that person needed assistance when she kept it hidden, and besides that's still no excuse. Yes there are terrible cases of animal cruelty in the world but this does not make this particular situation any less apalling. Sugar coat it any way you like this is outright cruelty. I do believe we are all eventually judged on how we treat old people, children and animals. I saw this person on TV and saying "my bad" does not make her accepting responsibility. Pay the fines (which I hope go towards animal adoptions) and perhaps serve a long term of community service at the animal shelter. This person should never take in another animal.
  • by What's wrong with the legal system Location: Harlem on Jul 3, 2007 at 08:31 PM
    What a shame that this lady will pay a higher price for animal cruelty than most murderers.
  • by simsbrooks Location: westside on Jul 3, 2007 at 07:07 PM
    It is clear to me this woman has a mental problem, seek medical help immediately, don't worry about the fine. She is nuts!!
  • by An animal rescue volunteer Location: Augusta on Jul 3, 2007 at 03:13 PM
    I’ve been reading through the comments and boy are you people judgmental. I’m not saying what she did was right, but this is obviously someone who lost control of herself and her situation. There are people out there who beat their animals to death, set them on fire while they’re alive, and do a whole host terrible, torturous things too heart-breaking contemplate--not to mention what the medical and cosmetic companies do to defenseless animals. But I don’t see anyone here commenting on them. There is a big difference between someone who needs help and someone who’s outright cruel. She admitted that she messed up. It sounds like she’s taking responsibility for her actions. There wouldn’t have been 6 inches of feces on the floor if the dogs hadn’t been getting fed–gross but true. When she found the 12th dog had been overlooked, she voluntarily turned it in. Where did she get the dogs in the first place? I’m guessing they were probably dumped. I lived out in the country for several years and at LEAST a dozen stray dogs were dumped in my area by irresponsible cowards. And where were all you people when she couldn’t afford to get them spayed and neutered? I’m curious how many of you have actually ever donated money to the Columbia Humane Society? Handed out pamphlets on the importance of spaying and neutering your pets? Fostered an animal for a rescue association? Regularly volunteer at your local animal shelter? Newsflash: if you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem!
  • by Tanya Location: Augusta on Jul 3, 2007 at 10:54 AM
    This is a horrible site, why is it that people like this get off with a handshake when they hurt innocent lives of animals that did not ask to be with her. If it were at all possible, I hope and pray that she gets charged with a felony and animal cruelty and a fine with jail time, people need toknow that we cannot do this to animals!
  • by David Location: Augusta on Jul 3, 2007 at 06:23 AM
    This situation didn't just happen because this person was down on her luck. "I'm sorry or I screwed up" doesn't cut it. Abuse of this type takes time to reach this level. Animal cruelty should always be treated as a felony offense. I also hope she gets the maximum in fines and jail time. She should also be barred for life from owning an animal. The inhumanity to these poor dogs breaks my heart.
  • by Brian Location: 110 second ave Lot V 1 Grovetown GA 30813 on Jul 2, 2007 at 05:25 PM
    Il ive about 15 feet away from these people in Grovetown and she is a very rude and loud to the one dog that she keep . The dog would be left outside and always " yelling " for food . I have feed the dog several times and the dog acted as if it had not ate for days
  • by Lisa Location: Augusta on Jul 2, 2007 at 04:27 PM
    Looks like she could have skipped a few meals herself. She ought to be ashamed of herself. Those poor innocent animals should never have been made to suffer like that. Makes me sick to know there are people like her in our community.
  • by Paula Location: Ga. on Jul 2, 2007 at 03:03 PM
    I hope she gets the MAX. That is so horrible. Those poor innocent animals!
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