Local News

Durham sheriff's office could take over animal control

Posted April 2, 2012

— The Durham Sheriff's Office could take over responsibilities for animal control in the county.

Durham County commissioners will hear a report Monday from the county manager recommending that the sheriff's office take over Durham County Animal Control.

The sheriff's office assuemd day-to-day supervision of the animal control division in December after the abrupt resignation of its administrator Cindy Bailey. Sgt. Brendan Hartigan, a former animal control officer, became the interim administrator. 

The county manager's office began an internal investigation in December after the Coalition to Unchain Dogs complained that animal control had improperly impounded three puppies as strays, putting them in danger of being euthanized.

A report from the county manager's office states that the investigation confirmed that complaints and others about animal control.

The investigation found that animal control kept poor records, did not apply county policies, gave written instructions to staff that contradicted county ordinances and laws, lacked standardized training for staff and had a backlog of 20,000 rabies certificates that hadn't been processed properly.

The county manager's office recommends that the animal control division be permanently placed under the sheriff's office as of July 1. The sheriff's office will present a plan about the transfer to county commissioners Monday.

Commissioners aren't expected to vote on the recommendation yet.


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  • barbstillkickin Apr 2, 2012

    We need a department that only deals with animals. To ask the sheriff's department to handle this is like just saying ok dogs, cats, and other animals you are on your own no one cares anymore. Well I care and I say please please do not give the sheriff's department the control because they can not even keep the killings from going on how will they protect a animal.

  • hp277 Apr 2, 2012

    If this will make Animal Control run better and cost less, great.

  • FragmentFour Apr 2, 2012

    I think the Durham County Sheriff's Office has enough to do without the added headaches of another department. The county should start with a new crew of administrators, lay out what the state and county regs are, and hold each administrator responsible for doing his or her job. The Sheriff's Office is not a babysitting service.

  • DurhamDevil Apr 2, 2012

    Animal Control and the Sheriff's Dept have always worked closely in Durham, so I think this "merger" makes sense.

    It would be nice to see more of the local governments figure out ways to reduce costs and streamline their efforts.

  • estrauch Apr 2, 2012

    I hope for Durham's sake that the Sheriff there will do a good job. I live in Wilson county and our Sheriff is NOT doing a good job :(

  • jlh4jdj Apr 2, 2012

    Wait you mean all law enforcement and government regulators are not perfect? Well every time I speak to any of them they say they are? Well I'll be! Really this will not improve anything only make things worse.

  • Bartmeister Apr 2, 2012

    Corruption in Durham Co. Animal Control is some of the least of their worries.