SAC COUNTY, Iowa (KCAU) – Officials in Sac County, Iowa, have arrested a woman after receiving a report that over 1,000 dead pigs were discovered at two hog confinement sites she was hired to maintain.
Elana Laber, 33, was arrested Thursday and charged with two counts of first-degree criminal mischief and two counts of livestock neglect, according to a press release from the Sac County Sheriff’s Office.
Officials said that the arrest was made after police responded to a report that over 1,000 dead pigs were discovered at the two confinement sites, which are located approximately half a mile apart.
Laber, who is employed to maintain both sites, initially told law enforcement that someone had shut off the electrical breakers the night before, leading to the death of the pigs. But a veterinarian working with the investigative team determined the pigs had been dead for at least a week.
Laber told officials that she was aware that the pigs had been dead for a week, but didn’t say anything because she “didn’t know what to do,” police said. The pigs had no access to feed or water and were found in different stages of decomposition.
The estimated loss for the owners, Corey AGR Inc., is around $150,000, according to police. Laber was in custody at the Sac County Jail as of Thursday afternoon. Her bond had been set at $22,000.