On Your Side: Former employee speaks out about animal rescue own - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

On Your Side: Former employee speaks out about animal rescue owner

Scott Kirkland at a recent court appearance. Source: WBRC video Scott Kirkland at a recent court appearance. Source: WBRC video
Randal Byrd spoke to FOX6 News via Skype. Source: WBRC video Randal Byrd spoke to FOX6 News via Skype. Source: WBRC video
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

A former employee is speaking out about the owner of a local pet rescue in trouble with the law.

FOX6 News Investigative Reporter Ronda Robinson has looked in to several complaints against Scott Kirkland, owner of the Birmingham Animal Adoption Rescue Service (BAARC).

We first learned about the alleged problems at BAARC when a viewer called to complain that his puppies had gotten sick after adopting them from BAARC.

According to the Leeds Municipal Court Clerk and Magistrate Laura Roberts, there were two charges of animal cruelty filed against Kirkland in 2013. Shawn Fleming, his groomer in 2013, was also charged with two counts of animal cruelty and one count of dogs running at large.

Court documents say an officer found "nine mix breed puppies wandering around the middle of Parkway Drive during a busy time of the day. The area that the puppies had been in was covered in dog feces and urine. The area was filthy and was covered in fleas and flies. There was no food or water."

We tried to speak with Kirkland after a recent court appearance but he would not comment.

The description in the court documents is one former employee Randal Byrd says he's familiar with.

"Food and water came when it came," he said. "They would be so hungry, you give them food and they would start fighting."

Byrd says he had concerns about the conditions dogs and cats were kept in.

"He would keep them locked in kennels 24/7. They were not allowed to come out. They had to pee and poop in the area where they slept," Byrd said. "They were getting sores all over themselves. Some of them had mange and some had parvo."

Byrd says he quit his job at BAARC when he was no longer getting paid.

"He didn't want to pay nobody for one. It was heartbreaking coming up each day and there was another dead dog waiting on me to get there," Byrd said.

Kirkland's lawyer says that Byrd was fired for failing to perform the duties needed to care for the animals.

"Mr. Kirkland vigorously disputes the claims of the past employee referenced in your report," Mark Pratt said. "Mr. Kirkland plans to defend all charges brought against him in the court of law."

Copyright 2014 WBRC. All rights reserved.

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