State officials say a North Carolina animal shelter illegally put more than a dozen animals to death and was not taking proper care of other animals.
Media outlets reported the Veterinary Division of the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has issued a civil penalty of nearly $5,000 for Sampson County and a warning for violating state statutes.
The Sampson County Animal Shelter was inspected last month.
The citation accuses the shelter of premature euthanasia of 15 animals, and inadequate feeding, lighting and veterinary care for animals.
Sampson County Manager Ed Causey said he was surprised by the notice and is working to determine what went wrong and how it can be fixed.
The county has two months to pay the penalty or file an appeal.