Local News

Family cemetery in Wilson being used as dog pen

Posted July 31, 2015 6:08 p.m. EDT
Updated July 31, 2015 6:20 p.m. EDT

— Eugenia Wade’s great-grandfather and aunts are buried in a small family plot off N.C. Highway 42 in Wilson.

But she recently noticed dog igloos placed among the headstones and holes dug in the ground.

Someone had purchased the property and fenced it in for use as a dog pen.

"I looked in the backyard and saw those dogs inside that pen, and I almost jumped out of the car going down the road because I was so upset,” she said. “I mean, you just don’t put a dog pen on top of a cemetery.”

Wade said she first noticed the dogs in the cemetery about six weeks ago and called the Wilson County Sheriff's Office.

A deputy went out, she said, and asked the property owner to remove the dogs.

“And they told him they would, but that was weeks ago and absolutely no movement has been made to disassemble or move,” she said.

Wade has pictures showing cracked headstones and torn-up dirt. She said it’s evidence of dogs being dogs.

It's their owners, she said, who are displaying no dignity.

“It’s a total lack of respect for the dead and the living,” she said.

When a WRAL News reporter and photographer accompanied Wade to the property Friday, a man approached and told them to leave.

“Y’all are acting like we’re bad people,” said the man, who wouldn’t give his name. “We plan on moving it. We didn’t know it was a problem. Anytime you wanted to come visit, you were more than welcome to visit.”

The Wilson County District Attorney's Office said it is aware of Wade's complaint and is investigating.