MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - Two former Memphis Animal Shelter employees admitted in court Wednesday they choked, hung and killed dogs in their care in the most inhumane ways.
Archie Elliot and Frank Lightfoot pleaded guilty to Aggravated Animal Cruelty charges.
The cruelty occurred in the room where employees were supposed to be humanly euthanizing the animals. What was described in court was anything but humane.
One of the charges Elliot admitted to was hanging a small, timid dog from its leash to strangle it to death. Lightfoot admitted that several times he choked dogs to the point they passed out, and then stabbed them in the heart with what is called a 'heart stick.' At no point were the dogs sedated.
The employees were caught after an undercover Memphis police officer was put in the shelter to investigate. Much of the cruelty was caught on video tape.
Arthur Horne, the attorney representing Lightfoot, told ABC24 News, "After we went through the facts and the testimony of the informant we felt it best to enter the guilty plea of Aggravated Animal Cruelty."
A third employee has until October 9 to make a decision to plead guilty or go to trial. That's also when Elliot and Lightfoot will be sentenced.