Boone County Residents Petitioning for Humane Officer

FOSTER, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Some people might say fighting for animal justice is Cheri Capuano's life.

Her house, a makeshift animal shelter, is home to several four-legged friends.

When something happens in her territory, you can bet she'll fight for answers.

"There was an incident where two of my foster dogs were shot in the head within 90 feet of my home, while my children were home," said Capuano.

Capuano's neighbor claims was in self defense, while she argues differently. Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to prove either way.

It's just one of many cruel circumstances she and others say have happened to animals in Boone County over the past few months.

"It seems to be a regular problem here," said fellow animal advocate Eva Kordusky.

Now, these ladies and others are petitioning for help.

An online request for a county Humane Officer has already garnered over 250 sign-ups in less than 24 hours. A similar Facebook page has around 400 likes!

"What we're trying to do is be a voice for the animals that have no voice," said Kordusky, "and we want to advocate for some change in animal welfare laws."

You may be wondering, 'what exactly would a Humane Officer do?'

"They would be charged with investigating those, and bringing the people to justice that commit those types of crimes," said Kordusky.

Meaning this new job would truly take a bite out of criminal activity, and most importantly, "give these dogs the justice that they need, they deserve," Capuano said.

Even if you're not an animal lover, this new position could affect your safety. Boone County Deputy Chief Chad Barker says as of now, these humane cases are taken by sheriff's officers. In essence, keeping them off other investigations.

If a position can be found, these deputies would have more time to fight crime county-wide.

Obviously with a new position comes dollar signs, but petitioners hope part of that salary can be funded by enforced fines.

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