Former Animal Shelter Director Indicted

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At a candlelight vigil in November, animal advocates who were gathered outside Memphis Animal Services on Tchulahoma Road chanted “Fire Alexander! Put him in jail!”

Those advocates may be getting their wish now. That is, if the authorities can locate former Memphis Animal Services director Ernie Alexander. District Attorney Bill Gibbons announced the former director’s indictment for animal cruelty charges this morning, but authorities believe he may be on the run. The Shelby County Sheriff’s office is asking for the public’s help in locating Alexander.

Two other shelter employees — former shelter supervisor Tina Quattlebaum and vet Angela Middleton — were also indicted on aggravated animal cruelty charges. Both turned themselves in to police on Thursday and were released on bond.

Alexander, who was hired in March 2008 to fill the long-vacant director position, was let go after an investigation in November found inadequate administrative oversight, a lack of documentation on paperwork, and missing paperwork.

That investigation also found dogs starving to death, as well as dogs diagnosed with rabies placed in cages with healthy dogs.

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