Woman speaks out after 43 animals removed from Randolph County home

RANDOLPH COUNTY, N.C. – A Randolph County woman accused of hoarding dozens of animals was arrested and charged with five counts of felony animal cruelty.

Janet Jones was arrested Wednesday morning after authorities removed 43 animals from a 1,200-square-foot Randolph County home.

"I have 30 cats, 11 dogs, and 20 parrots," said Jones. "These people don't understand what these animals are used to and the lengths that I go through."

On Wednesday, the Randolph County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigative Division, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Randolph County Animal Control executed a search warrant at 380 Kings Ridge Road.

The sheriff’s office had been working with the ASPCA and Randolph County Animal Control in reference to a possible hoarding situation at the home.

Some of her pets stayed in kennels, while others roamed around the house. All the pets have since been confiscated.

The animals were exposed to high levels of ammonia caused by urine and feces, according to the Randolph County Sheriff’s Office.

"They bust in here and take animals that are scared to death," said Jones. "I live here alone. They're not use to people coming."

This investigation started months ago, when animal control found out about her pets.

With the help of the ASPCA, the animals were removed and taken to the Randolph County animal shelter.

"While they are holding mine in jail, they're going to have to euthanize other ones that could be getting homes in jail," said Jones.

She said that's one reason she never asked the shelter for help. She feared the animals would be put to sleep.

"I have a fenced in yard for my little dogs. And a huge yard. All this property out back. for my big dogs and most of my cats are not adoptable,” she said.

The 70-year-old said she had some of these pets for 10 to 15 years and she tried to make sure they had everything they needed.

"My vet will attest to that. I spend hundreds and thousands of dollars at her place," said Jones.

The animals are a huge part of her life, so she says seeing them taken away is devastating.

"They're my whole life. I could have a really, really easy life but without them I have no life."

The Randolph County Sheriff's office said it took six to seven hours to get the animals out of the house. They also said that Jones is not allowed to have pets, unless it's through an order.