Ticket Given to Gibbs Dropped by City

Newscenter 11 has an update on a story that happened in late February.

The ticket given by an animal control officer to Judy Gibbs, for allegedly interfering with the officer's duties, has been dropped by the city of Meridian.
Gibbs said that happened after she met with city officials Tuesday.

Gibbs and others had found an injured dog on North Hills Street and someone called animal control, mistaking it for animal rescue.

Gibbs was given a ticket by the animal control officer for allegedly interfering with the officer when she asked to be able to take the dog to a veterinarian.

The officer refused to turn the dog over to her. The animal was later euthanized. That, and the injured dog's treatment at the scene, upset people.

Now that ticket has been dropped. Gibbs said her efforts are focused on forming an advisory board made up of city and county residents who are animal lovers. She said she would like to help improve the local animal control.

If county supervisors vote to approve this proposal, Gibbs says the new advisory board would look into grant money, donations, help from volunteers and local vets.

Animal control's building is also in need of serious upgrades. One area resident told Newscenter 11 i she hopes the advisory board is approved.

"I don't care if we have to raise taxes," said Sandia Butler. "That'll be a really popular subject. But something needs to be done to fund people to look after these animals."

Gibbs was not available for an on-camera interview Wednesday, but sent Newscenter 11 a statement:

"It looks like a bad situation has resulted in positive changes for our local animals and our local animal shelter. Good things are in the works."

Board of supervisors president Joe Norwood said he was just made aware of the proposal at 1 p.m. Wednesday and would have more to say about it after supervisors meet Thursday.

Lauderdale County's animal control is a joint operation of the city of Meridian and Lauderdale County. Officials say they take in about 4,000 animals annually, and have an adoption rate of about thirty percent.

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  • by CW on Mar 29, 2012 at 08:38 AM
    Raise taxes for dogs ,what about people that dont like dogs or cats or dont want a pet.why not make the tax on people who own pets and leave everyone else out of your wants.
    • reply
      by Meridianite on Mar 29, 2012 at 05:55 PM in reply to CW
      To CW: To answer your question: All people in the city pay school taxes whether they have children in the school system or not. It's no different.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Mar 30, 2012 at 05:37 AM in reply to CW
      Why not use the taxes paid by working people FOR working people and leave everyone else out? I don't like people that are too sorry to work.
  • by Jacki on Mar 29, 2012 at 07:10 AM
    " WHY".....Guess you are not an animal lover.
  • by Jamie on Mar 29, 2012 at 06:37 AM
    Until the Animal Control Officer in question is FIRED, nothing Judy or anyone else does will do any good, because he has no feelings or compassion or he would not have handled that precious animal in the way that he did. All the money raised, new buildings or new vehicles will not change that. He needs to be gone!
  • by even animals on Mar 28, 2012 at 11:11 PM
    lord have mercy.even animals are cared for and they bite too.and we cant care for our kids.yah good going
  • by southerngentlemen Location: Meridian on Mar 28, 2012 at 10:35 PM
    The newscenter should make their reporters equally available to ALL law breakers so that ALL tickets and charges are dropped and dismissed.
  • by Wondering on Mar 28, 2012 at 08:55 PM
    This was an arraingmanet day and it was dropped.... This is a Im guilty or Not guilty day...... Preference being done again..... WOW.. I would rather my taxed be raised to give the empoyees a raise..
  • by Clean it up! Location: Lauderdale County on Mar 28, 2012 at 08:41 PM
    Good Going, Judy. I hope some changes are made soon. For one, the animal control officer that abused that poor dog needs to find another job. It doesn't sound like he even got a reprimand. As long as workers like him are still there, nothing will change!
  • by WHY Location: MERIDIAN on Mar 28, 2012 at 07:07 PM
  • by Patti Coxwell Location: Meridian on Mar 28, 2012 at 06:10 PM
    Thanks to WTOK for following up on this story. I hope that all of the people who commented on this story (on any blog, website, or in conversation) will now help to get this board approved so that the care, adoption, and containment of animals in the city and county can improve. I'd also like to see the conditions for the Animal Control workers improve. I'd be willing to pay more taxes to upgrade or even move their headquarters so that there is more space. They need better vehicles. I'd like to know that there is at least one animal behaviorist on call so that scared animals don't get labelled 'aggressive' and get put down by mistake. Everyone who is concerned for the safety of people and animals in this area, please find a way to support and improve Animal Control, East Mississippi Animal Rescue, Lucky Dog Rescue, or any other local organization that helps animal.
  • by Second Voice Location: Meridian on Mar 28, 2012 at 05:05 PM
    Hopefully, good things have come from this episode. However, if reports were accurate, the Animal Control person should be disciplined and better trained.
    • reply
      by Jazzy on Mar 29, 2012 at 01:43 PM in reply to Second Voice
      I'm glad the charges were dropped. I don't think people 's taxes should be raised though. The money can be raised in another way.
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