Prosecutors filed six counts on Monday against an Adelanto Animal Control supervisor who allegedly drowned roughly 50 kittens over a four-month period,officials said. Kevin Murphy, 36, faces six misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals.
Hill said the charges stem from Murphy allegedly drowning the kittens between July and October. If convicted, Murphy could face six years in county jail for the drownings.
"We were not friends, but we were colleagues," said Kathy Williamson, manager of the Victor Valley Animal Protective League in Apple Valley. "I was really surprised when I heard that someone supposedly trying to do the right thing by rescuing animals is then charged with killing them. It doesn't make any sense."
Williamson said she has an agreement with Adelanto Animal Control to take in whatever animals its workers bring her. The city pays a fee for each animal her shelter takes in. The fee for a dead animal is less than for a live one.
Adelanto pays the shelter $23 to take a live cat and $10 to take -- and then dispose of -- a dead one. Williamson said Adelanto Animal Control officers brought her 47 dead cats and dogs in 2005. In 2006, they brought 65. Last year, the total was 119.
"For every animal they don't bring me alive, they save money," she said. "But it's not [Murphy's] money, it's the city's money."