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Animal shelter closed pending investigation

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The Adrion W. Baird Animal Center is closed pending an investigation into allegations against shelter director Betty Crumley.

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There is no scheduled date for the shelter to be reopened, according to the Campbell County Mayor's office.

On Tuesday, an investigator from the Tennessee Department of Health was at the shelter for a tour and to speak with each employee about shelter practices.

On Thursday, local advocate group Friends of Campbell County Animals and the Humane Society of the Tennessee Valley came to remove every animal from the shelter. The doors were locked around noon.

There were no plans to shut the shelter down, Campbell County Mayor William Baird said on Thursday morning. He was at the shelter and spoke with Crumley before the rescue organizations came in to remove the animals.

The investigation by the TDH could take as long as three weeks, Baird said.

Previous Story - April 11, 2:48 p.m.

At least two animal-advocacy groups removed every animal from the Adrion W. Baird Animal Center, in Jacksboro, earlier this morning.

Around 11 a.m., Campbell County Mayor William Baird left the shelter after what he described as a "private conversation" between himself and shelter director Betty Crumley. He said his office was still waiting on the results of an investigation by the Tennessee Department of Health before making a decision about the future of the shelter. As of today, he said the shelter will not close.

"Not at this point, but all of our options are open," Baird said.

Baird did give permission for local advocate group Friends of Campbell County Animals to pull every animal that wasn't on a three-day hold.

At the same time, representatives from the Humane Society of the Tennessee Valley arrived and said they were also there to pull every animal not on a three-day hold.

Four officers from the Campbell County Sheriff's Department also arrived at the scene. They went into Crumley's office and closed the door. FCCA rescue coordinator Patricia Simpson agreed to let HSTV take the animals.

Animals removed from the shelter numbered 16 - two cats and 14 dogs. The cats, a black-and-white one with a mustache and a long-haired calico, were placed into carriers and taken from the shelter. Dogs were put on leashes and walked out the side door.

Advocates reached down to pet and speak to the dogs as they were led to the HSTV van.

Crumley would not comment about the status of the shelter, but said the center would be closed for the day.

Before he left the shelter, Baird said he has never seen evidence of the any wrongdoing on Crumley's part.  He did say he planned to speak with other shelter employees about the allegations.

Baird said he hopes the shelter can become something Campbell County can be proud of.

This story will be updated.