Stray Rescue

(via Flickr/banspy)

Updated with information about new case.

A 31-year-old St. Louis man will spend up to four years behind bars for torturing, mutilating and killing five dogs and leaving their bodies in a vacant building on the city's north side.

Darick Dashon Stallworth pleaded guilty in August to three counts of animal abuse and and two of animal neglect. He'll serve four years for the animal abuse charges, and 15 days for the neglect charges, all concurrently.

(Adam Allington/St. Louis Public Radio)

St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay is creating a task force aimed at reducing animal cruelty in the city.

Slay announced the creations of the “Mayor Francis Slay Animal Cruelty Task Force” during a press conference at Stray Rescue on Tuesday.

Among other things, the city police department will dedicate one full-time officer to animal abuse cases.

Slay says the task force sends a message that cases of animal neglect and cruelty will be prosecuted just as thoroughly as any other crime.

(Johanna Mayer/St. Louis Public Radio)

Updated 4:23 p.m. May 22 with name of person arrested, charges filed:  From the St. Louis Circuit Attorney's office:

"Darick Stallworth has been charged with three counts of animal abuse and two counts of 1st degree animal neglect."

Here's a link to the probable cause statement related to the case.

Updated 8:30 a.m. May 22:

St. Louis police have arrested a suspect in an animal abuse case in north St. Louis.

St. Louis Public Radio

STL area democrat files local control legislation

The legislation, sponsored by Joe Keaveny, would return the St. Louis Police Department back to local control for the first time since the 1850s. Thursday was the first day lawmakers could file bills for next year's session, which starts January 4th.  Local control bills failed during both this year's regular and special sessions as they became bargaining chips in the tax credit battle between the House and Senate. 

(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

A year-long battle over the best way to use about $258,000 in donated tax dollars that were originally intended for a new city-operated shelter is over.

(Warren Nichols/St. Louis Department of Health)

The nearly 10-year-old effort to build a new city animal shelter came a big step closer to completion today, when the Board of Estimate and Apportionment approved the use of $170,000 in capital improvement funds to retrofit an old vehicle emissions station on St. Louis's north side to safely and humanely house animals.

(Johanna Mayer/St. Louis Public Radio)

A new city animal shelter on the north side, a full-time veterinarian and vet techs to staff it, and more animal control officers are all on the wish list for the city of St. Louis in the second phase of its new animal control strategy.

(Johanna Mayer/St. Louis Public Radio)

Accusations of political gamesmanship are flying today after the introduction of a new St. Louis Board of Aldermen resolution giving about $255,000 to the non-profit animal rescue organization Stray Rescue.

(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

What Ald. Stephen Conway called a comprehensive animal control strategy for St. Louis is somewhat in limbo tonight after an aldermanic committee passed one bill, rejected a second, and waited to take action on a third.

What passed:

(Photo by Warren Nichols/St. Louis Department of Health)

Last year, 90 dogs left the St. Louis city pound for what Mayor Francis Slay hoped would be a better life. The move marked the end of an attempt by the city to replace its aging pound with a state-of-the-art shelter funded by donations.

From that day on, Stray Rescue - a non-profit with 24 employees and an army of volunteers - cared for all but a handful of dogs and answered the city's animal control calls: all without taking a dime of city money.

If you believe the city’s health department, there are fewer strays on the street, and more dogs are being adopted. But there are questions about how long the success will last.

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