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Protest at courthouse brings attention to animal cruelty case

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Protesters at Courthouse

Two demonstrators display signs on the courthouse steps in Huntingdon to bring awareness to an animal abuse case. 

Two concerned individuals protested on the steps of the Carroll County Courthouse Monday morning to bring attention to the court case stemming from the seizure of 149 animals from a Carroll County couple in April. Melissa and Andrea, who did not disclose their last names, are unhappy with the way the case is being handled.

On April 8, Carroll County authorities in coordination with Animal Rescue Corps., Inc. (ARC) seized 149 live animals from the residence of Tara L. Neuzler and Donald Scott Schoenthal in Atwood.

Since then, the animals have been preserved by ARC as evidence for the case, and have not been eligible to be put up for adoption. According to Melissa, who volunteers for ARC but is not a spokesperson for the organization and was not protesting on the organizations behalf, the financial burden brought on by the medical treatment and ongoing care of these animals has put a huge strain on the organization, which has been forced to suspend nearly all other activity.

A motion filed in the Carroll County General Sessions Court on May 30 by Assistant District Attorney James Webb stated that as of May 28, ARC had incurred expenses of $147,513.96 for the care and maintenance of the animals for 51 days. The motion asked the court to require the defendants to post a security bond of $218,073.96.

“They’re playing games with the system,” Melissa said. “They’re filing appeal after appeal trying to buy some time and get the animals back.”

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