FORREST CITY, AR (WMC-TV) - Members of the St. Francis County Humane Society say releasing disturbing videotape of alleged atrocities inside the Forrest City animal shelter is their last hope.
"The mayor doesn't like us, the city council is ineffective, so what do we have? The public," Gary Schwartz said.
We followed volunteers into the shelter Tuesday, where we personally counted empty bowls in a number of cages and dogs definitely starving for attention.
"You never know what you're gonna find when you get out here," Mark Bieber said.
Critics say deplorable conditions, from maggots to mouse droppings, violate even the city's own ordinances.
It's something Mayor Gordon McCoy and his hand-picked animal control director agreed to address after our phone call. McCoy acknowledged room for improvement, but said anyone viewing the video should beware.
"I've seen the video," he said. "It's not a good video, but it's not a true depiction of the shelter."
McCoy only implied the video was fabricated, convinced it's a ploy to insight emotional reaction to a complicated issue.
"Take a look at this place," he said. "This place is very clean."
"We were working to get things resolved in a quiet manner, and it just never has happened," said Humane Society member Janie Hicks.
Cruelty charges against the animal control director did not hold up in court. The battle could eventually end up in a lawsuit.