• White Oak animal shelter under investigation

    Updated:

    WHITE OAK, Pa. - A local animal shelter is under investigation.

    The White Oak Animal Safe Haven touts itself as a no-kill shelter, but that mission statement is now at the center of controversy.  White Oak mayor and shelter founder Ina Marton is accused of having four dogs euthanized.

    “Three of our volunteers got bit. Finger, hand and leg. You can't have that," said Marton.

    When Channel 11 paid Marton a visit Thursday, she told Jodine Costanzo she released a Rottweiler and pit bulls to the dogcatcher for safety reasons.  Costanzo confirmed the dogs were euthanized.

    “When they left this door, I was hoping they could be rehabilitated. I don't know if they were or not,” said Marton.

    “They were put down,” Costanzo said to Marton.

    Shelter vice president and business manager Frank Sabolcik told Costanzo he was so outraged by what happened that he resigned. Marton said she terminated him.

    "I could not stand by and watch the animals being euthanized," said Sabolcik.

    Costanzo confirmed the state department of agriculture is investigating the facility but said this:

    “There is nothing in the dog law that authorizes or requires the dog law enforcement office to penalize a kennel that labels itself a ‘no-kill’ yet decides to euthanize its dogs."

    Sabolcik calls it unethical.

    “No need to euthanize.  We had options,” he said.

    The shelter is also under investigation by county police, Costanzo reported.  Detectives seized two computers last week and said a substantial amount of money is unaccounted for.

    Both investigations are in the early stages, and the shelter remains open.


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