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Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Arrests Seneca Woman on Multiple Animal Cruelty Charges

Jennifer Marie Hunnicutt

(Walhalla, SC)------------------------------------A Seneca woman was released from jail today, after posting bond, after her arrest yesterday on 35 charges related to animal cruelty.

36 year old Jennifer Marie Hunnicutt, of Alexander Road, was booked into the Oconee County Detention Center around 3:17pm. Hunnicutt received a combined $102,975.00 surety bond. Hunnicutt has been charged with:

· Six counts of Ill Treatment of Animals, In General, Overworking, 1st Offense

· 15 counts of Ill Treatment of Animals in General, Torture, which are all felony charges.

· 14 counts of Abandonment of Animals

Animal Control Deputies responded to 1104 Alexander Road, near Seneca, on March 13th of this year, in regards to a welfare check due to reports of a goat being stuck in a fence and multiple animals that had been abandoned. After receiving no response after knocking on the front door of the residence, the Animal Control Deputies observed two goats that were deceased on the property.

The Animal Control Deputies obtained a search warrant for the property in order to search for other animals that may be deceased or neglected. During the execution of the search warrant, deputies discovered a total of 15 deceased animals (four dogs, one cat, one Bearded Dragon Domesticated Lizard, one chicken and eight goats). The deceased animals were either in a state of decomposition or only skeletal remains were recovered.

Animal Control also discovered six animals that were still alive (one ram, one ewe, and four Pygmy Goats).

The remains of the dead animals, as well as the animals that were still alive, were seized by Animal Control Deputies. Animal Control obtained additional evidence from the scene due to the execution of the search warrant.

Based on evidence gathered during the investigation, Hunnicutt was charged with depriving the animals of necessary sustenance and/or shelter, or by omission, which led the death of some of the animals. Hunnicutt was also charged with abandoning some of the animals without securing another owner or providing the necessities of life.

According to information obtained by Animal Control Deputies, Hunnicutt was not seen at the property location for approximately a month and a-half.

The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is continuing its investigation.

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