MEMPHIS, TN - An employee of the Memphis Animal Shelter denies any wrongdoing, as Memphis Police join the search for Kapone, an 11-year-old pit bull last seen on June 24th, 2011.
Witnesses tell abc24.com they watched animal control officer Demetria Hogan pick up Kapone, and Jersey, a 3-year-old pit bull, after the dogs escaped from the backyard of Brook Shoup's Cordova home.
Shoup says she went to the Memphis Animal Shelter the next day, before it opened, to pick up Kapone and Jersey. She quickly found Jersey, but Kapone was nowhere to be found.
Hogan's boss, Public Services Director Janet Hooks, released the following statement soon after:
"While the dispatch records indicate that, via radio, an ACO picked up two dogs in the vicinity of the Shoup's residence and was enroute to the shelter to impound them, the records verify that only one dog was actually processed."
So what happened to Kapone between the time Hogan picked him up and when she dropped only Jersey off at the shelter?
abc24.com went to Hogan's house to ask her about the incident. She says her home had recently been searched by police, and she insisted she did nothing wrong. According to court records, Hogan has had a number of previous run-ins with the law, including arrests for forgery and identity theft.
Director Hooks told abc24.com last week she expected to wrap up her internal investigation by July 5th. On Wednesday, July 6th, Hooks was unavailable for comment.
Shelter Director Matthew Pepper did confirm that as the investigation continues, Hogan is still on the job.
Pepper says according to the rules of the union representing Hogan, she can continue working until a hearing is held. Pepper says with Memphis Police now investigating, it's unknown when that hearing would take place.
Demetria Hogan has been in the news before. In April 2010, abc24.com reported that Hogan was hired at the shelter under the City of Memphis' Second Chance Program for convicted felons. And in May 2010, Shelter Advisory Board members told us Hogan had a history of not showing up for court, causing animal cruelty cases to be thrown out.
A tipline for information regarding Kapone's disappearance has been set up. Anyone with information is asked to call: (901)-528-0699. The reward to find the dog is now $3,000.