Grenada, Mississippi (January 6, 2010) - On behalf of In Defense of Animals, an animal-protection organization with over 85,000 members, Debbie Young, a volunteer at IDA’s Project Hope Sanctuary in Grenada, Mississippi, is filing an affidavit for each animal shot to death by Canton and Madison County, Mississippi, animal control officer, Alonzo Esco. On Tuesday, January 5, the Board of Aldermen approved the decision to terminate Esco from his job for “improperly disposing of dogs,” according to Canton Police.
Two days before Thanksgiving, Ms. Young received a call from someone who knew a dog had been picked up by animal control and she was asked to pursue getting the dog so the caller could help place or even adopt the animal herself. When Mississippi Animal Rescue League, the private kennel where dogs are held for a five-day period, was contacted about this dog, it was learned that Canton’s animal control officer, Alonzo Esco, had not arrived at the shelter and had not been seen there for several months, which led to the question, “what is he doing with the dogs?”
Speculation was that Esco had been selling them as bait for dogfighting. But what became clear after an investigation by the Canton Police Department as a result of Debbie Young’s formal affidavit was that Esco had shot at least 100 dogs and dumped their bodies in a Canton waterway. The findings were turned over to the Canton City Council on Tuesday and Mr. Esco’s employment with the city was then terminated.
Because the crimes were not a felony, the case would have to be taken up in a lower court. And the Mayor of Canton said that because it was a misdemeanor, the city would not take up the case at all, leading Debbie Young to file multiple misdemeanor charges on behalf of IDA, which is also seeking the Department of Environmental Quality to file its own charges for an environmental hazard.
“We will not let go of this,” said Doll Stanley, director of IDA’s Project Hope. “It is absolutely appalling and disgusting that an animal control officer working for any municipality would take it upon himself to violate city policy by shooting animals entrusted to his care. We know this goes on in different communities in Mississippi, and we’re hoping that when these same communities see that Mr. Esco is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law that they will wake up and smell the coffee.”
Esco is facing at least 100 counts of animal cruelty for shooting the dogs. IDA is also looking into the fact that he used city property to act illegally.
Sources revealed that Esco was let go from the Canton Fire Department for stealing gasoline and “demoted” to animal control.
“What is very disconcerting is that a city employee would be demoted to animal control. It is really disturbing that an animal control position is not considered respectable. Sadly, here in the Mississippi, animal control is often viewed as a gateway to the police or fire department. As an auxiliary policeman, Esco did have a police weapon and this is the weapon he used to kill these animals.”
On Wednesday morning, WLBT, a local Mississippi TV and radio station, conducted a poll asking listeners what they thought about animal cruelty and should the state statutes be stronger. There was an 86 percent lead in favor of strengthening Mississippi state laws, which IDA’s Doll Stanley has vigorously dedicated herself to for years regarding legislation about animals.
To whom it may concern preferably animal lovers,
I have been fighting Hitler's law BSL for many years,and this is one of the major problems that
exist,people like Esco gravitate to positions in Animal control units where they can murder living creatures
without fear of retaliation or retribution,they are undeniably cowards of the 1st order.Denver Colorada,Miami-Dade
county are full of Escos.No doubt Esco will now start looking in places such as these for his next position,maybe Ohio,
they have just brought in this Evil and Heinous law.
I am officially now ashamed to be from the town of CANTON MS.
Since I am now finding out that there are no felony laws against animal torture….
(these next words stick in my throat)…I am ASHAMED to be a Mississippian.
These are words I have seldom uttered before.
Not only the info you are getting on this guy…but it seems to be pretty common knowledge that he supplied (SOLD)
MANY of these poor animals as “bait dogs” to be torn apart by fighting dogs…and THEN disposed of.
This idiot is the “cousin” of our last piece of @#$%^ MAYOR here in Canton.(Who appointed him.)
Our town radio station WMGO ‘s “Jerry LOUSTEAU” has been warning people about this guy for a LONG TIME.
Jerry is a long time animal rights activist. (WMGO AM 1390) HE broke the story. Thank MS YOUNG !
Our CHIEF of POLICE absolutely positively has known about this …how could she NOT?
MARL is 50 miles from here. .ACO here consists of ESCO and a TRUCK .
FUNNY how all the dog carcasses had been cleaned out of that ditch by the time TV camera’s got there…
They never have done anything else that fast around here,
The PRISONERS that ESCO would sign out to help him kill the animals would not even go with him
any more and had been telling the guards and cops about it the whole time.
Guess who ran the investigation today???.....That’s right…….the CANTON POLICE DEPARTMENT.
NOTHING will happen to this guy. I FEAR for ANY community that this man is in.
My Name is ****** ;I am a 47 year old cotton farmer from here. I moved out of that HORRID town
5 years ago back to the COUNTRY. I have to take animals that people dump on our back roads to the MARL all the time
along with a donation. It breaks my heart. I doubt I will sleep tonight after this.
I pray that there is another power that will take care of this garbage in the hereafter. Some people just don’t want to
have to stand in line to get to HELL.
WHAT CAN I DO TO GET THESE FRIGGIN” LAWS INSTATED ???? The people are READY !!!
I am torn between tears and shaking rage. When will we as a society stand up and speak for those who can’t speak and say “this is not acceptable” and we will not tolerate it any longer. This man is a sociopath and has a history of domestic abuse on top of all his other lovely characteristics. God has those gentle little creatures now in his arms and has prepared a special place in hell for this man.
To hear that the mayor of Canton is the cousin of Mr. Esco only demonstrates that the nut doesn't fall far from the tree.The mayor had to be sheltering him all along for his theft of city gas,bringing drugs into city jails,the massacre of animals with illegal dumping into the waterways and the rumored connection to providing dogs and cats as bait for the fighting dogs.
In no way can the City of Canton investigate this crime and all of it's ramifications.If I were a citizen,I would demand that the govenor send in an investigative unit and prosecute all involved.I am still upset that a city employee and the city government would act in such corrupt,amoral and un ethical manner.
Lawrence A Dickerson
Send your comments to: YourVoice@AnimalRadio.com