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Gallia County dog wardens charged with animal cruelty

Three Gallia County dog wardens have been charged with animal cruelty following an investigation into illegal dog euthanizations.

Jean A. Daniels, Paul L. Simmers and Jason Harris all of Gallia County were charged with dozens of violations involving animal cruelty, the Gallipolis City Solicitor's Office said.

Daniels was charged with 13 violations. Simmers was charged with 32 violations. Harris was charged with 12 violations.

Paul Simmers is the current dog warden for Gallia County.

The Gallia County Sheriff's Department began an investigation into the wardens of the Gallia County Animal Shelter and their method of euthanizing dogs between March 2012 and February 2014. The investigation began in February following a report that 11 dogs were improperly put down. The solicitor's office said the dog wardens are accused of injecting a solution into the animal's muscles to sedate them, then injecting the same solution into the dogs' hearts. The animals are believed to have suffered intense pain under this method and it is viewed as an unacceptable practice by the American Humane Association.

The office said the three men had attended a training session by the American Humane Association before the euthanizations. The investigation could only go back two years because there is a two-year statute of limitation on misdemeanors.