Judge finds former Lawrence Co. animal services director guilty of animal cruelty

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Bobbie Taylor is Lawrence County's former animal services director. A judge found her guilty of animal cruelty in 2016. (WHNT News 19 file)

LAWRENCE COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) – A district judge found former Lawrence County animal services director Bobbie Taylor guilty of animal cruelty on Thursday.

Taylor was charged with 16 counts of animal cruelty and one count of animal abuse. Judge Angela Terry sentenced Taylor to 30 days in the Lawrence County Jail, but the sentence is suspended pending her payment of restitution.

The judge also fined Taylor $250 in crime victim compensation fees and $100 in bail bond fees. She appeared in a Lawrence County courtroom last month for a bench trial. Taylor’s attorney filed a motion to have two charges dismissed, and filed the motion to have the remaining charges heard by a jury.  Taylor has two weeks to appeal the ruling.

Taylor is accused of abusing between 250 and 300 animals in her care. This is a story WHNT News 19 first broke last summer.

The charges stem from a joint investigation this summer by Moulton Police and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

ASPCA officials spent roughly a month in Moulton to help rescue and re-home the more than 250 animals in Taylor’s care.  They adopted out more than 200 of the animals and sent others to partner shelters around the U.S.

The animals were seized due to allegations of abuse, neglect and starvation.

The Lawrence County Commission awarded Taylor an $80,000 animal services contract in February of 2015.  That contract was stripped away two days after video surfaced earlier this year which appeared to show a dog being beaten, and others that appeared to be in poor health.  A volunteer shot the video and sent it to our newsroom.

RELATED: Here is extensive coverage on WHNT.com from reports this year about the Lawrence County Animal Shelter.