‘I beg you, please help us out,’ pet shelter says after break-ins

Published: Sep. 3, 2020 at 11:11 PM EDT
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AIKEN, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - Aiken County officials are searching for a man, caught on camera, and breaking into the county animal shelter. This isn’t the first time he’s done this, but investigators want to make sure it’s the last.

Investigators say the man broke into the Aiken County Animal Shelter six times.

In the most recent surveillance video, you can see the suspect walking around the shelter just before he takes a dog from its kennel.

“We’re all devastated that this is happening. You know we’re -- we just can’t believe it,” said Bobby Authurs, a manager at the Aiken County Animal Shelter.

Now, the dogs are locked down for their own safety.

That recent video was taken around 1:00 a.m. Monday morning, when the man allegedly broke into the shelter taking a dog.

“Sunday, he actually took some kind of tool and pried open the latch and broke the latch, that the lock holds,” Authurs explained.

And they say he’s broken in five times before, and each time, the shelter added more security.

They added cables to each kennel, switched to using padlocks, then secured the tops of the kennels. But nothing has stopped the unidentified man from coming back.

“He’s finding new ways to get in because when we had the first one taken, we just didn’t ever imagine with the perimeter being locked, that we had to lock everything down,” Authurs said.

Every dog except one was found shortly after. One was found in the back parking lot of the shelter, with signs of trauma on its body.

“She was adopted and so she’s going to be with us another week or so, and hopefully, she’ll be going off and she appears to be okay right now,” Authurs said about the dog found.

Now, the shelter and the sheriff’s office are asking for the public’s help.

“It not right, it’s not right for this guy to come in here and take dogs and doing what he’s doing. It’s not right at all. So, I beg you, please help us out, and let’s locate this guy. And let’s bring him to justice,” Authurs said.

The shelter and the sheriff’s office are asking for your help. If you think you know who the man in the video is or have any information on where he might be, please contact the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office at 803-642-1761.

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