A director of an animal rescue has been arrested after 30 animals were found rotting in her home.
Carolina Dawn Pennington, 47, was the director and CEO of GROWL, an animal rescue based in South Carolina.
On May 22, deputies from the sheriff's department were called after a "smell of death" was reported coming from her home, local news station WSPA reported.
Inside the house, police found a horrific display of animal cruelty — trapped inside crates and cages were 28 dogs and two cats.
It's believed the animals had been dead for a while by the time they were discovered, and appeared as though they had died from starvation and dehydration.
"They were lying in their own waste and it is believed that they died in the cages and had not been moved prior to being discovered," the sheriff's department said in a statement to FOX Television Stations.
Authorities said the bodies had been in the home for at least nine months, according to WLTX.
In addition to running GROWL, Pennington was also working for the Kershaw County Humane Society.
She turned herself in to the authorities.
“It’s appalling and it’s heartbreaking,” Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott told ABC Columbia.
“This is someone who was entrusted by the community to care for these animals and find them homes. She betrayed that trust and she betrayed the trust of these innocent animals who relied on her.”
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