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2 Cobb animal control workers arrested on animal cruelty charges

COBB COUNTY, Ga. — Two former Cobb County animal services officers are facing animal cruelty charges.

Investigators said the crimes happened inside the shelter.

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Channel 2′s Cobb County Bureau Chief Michele Newell spoke to Stephen Hammond, the director of the shelter, who said the actions his former employees decided to take don’t reflect how dedicated and hardworking his team is as a whole.

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“We’re disappointed that this occurred. We are certainly working to keep anything like this from occurring in the future,” Hammond said. “They were immediately removed from animal care duties. Neither employee works for us anymore.”

Norman Kibe and Josef Luague were identified as the animal service workers. Their duties included caring for and feeding the animals. Both men have been charged with animal cruelty.

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According to the arrest warrants, Kibe was trying to catch a cat in the intake room when he became frustrated and slammed the cat against the wall.

Kibe is also accused of forcefully throwing a cat into a cage.

Investigators said Luague placed a leash on a dog and when the dog was halfway out, he aggressively slammed it between the door and the metal frame of the cage.

Newell stopped by Luague’s home on Thursday to get his side of the story, but he didn’t have much to say.

“I don’t want to talk. Not right now,” he said.

Newell stopped by Kibe’s house, but he wasn’t home.

All four animals are doing fine.

If they had been seriously hurt, Kibe and Luague would be facing felony charges. Instead, they are facing misdemeanors.