Animal shelter workers accused of abuse will face judge - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Animal shelter workers accused of abuse will face judge

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From left to right: Frank Lightfoot, Jr., Billy D. Stewart, and Archie Elliott, III. From left to right: Frank Lightfoot, Jr., Billy D. Stewart, and Archie Elliott, III.
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - Animal lovers were shocked to learn of alleged animal abuse inside the Memphis Animal Shelter (MAS) last year. And today, the people accused of abusing those animals, will face a judge.

Three MAS shelter employees were indicted on animal cruelty charges following a three month long undercover police investigation. Frank Lightfoot, Jr. and Billy D. Stewart each face four counts of aggravated animal cruelty. Archie Elliott, III faces two counts.

The investigation was conducted after complaints of animal fighting and animal cruelty at the shelter. There were also complaints of missing or unaccounted for animals.

An undercover investigator posed as an employee and witnessed several acts of cruelty on animals committed by the workers on duty.

The undercover operation went on for three months, and what police discovered was disturbing.

Shelter workers allegedly mistreated six animals while on the way to being euthanized.

Shocking photos released on the internet illustrate what many suspected. One photo shows puppies being transported in a trash can. Another image posted on a blog shows a dog being dragged, supposedly to his death.

Lightfoot and Elliot both pled guilty and will be sentenced Tuesday.

Stewart did not enter a plea, and is set to go to trial Tuesday as well.

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