ROSWELL, N.M. (KRQE) – Roswell Mayor Dennis Kintigh is getting death threats for banning state rescue groups from adopting from the local shelter.
Monday, Kintigh lifted that ban and formed an agreement allowing groups to adopt again, but now that policy is under fire too.
The new agreement says rescues can adopt from Roswell’s animal control facility as long as they have proof they’re a non-profit, agree to treat the pets humanely and agree to inspections.
Kintigh says he thought the policy changes had calmed the situation, but Tuesday disturbing voicemails flooded his office.
Some of the messages were so threatening officials had to call police.
Local rescue worker Helene Cobelnyk says the new policy is too strict.
“This is kind of tying the hands of a lot of groups who are really doing a lot of good,” said Cobelnyk.
Cobelnyk says it takes a group at least one year to get non-profit status.
She, like many other rescues that have applied, are waiting to hear back from the IRS.
With Kintigh’s new policy Cobelnyk and many other rescues can’t adopt Roswell animals because they aren’t approved non-profits.
“The whole movement in the country is no kill,” Cobelnyk said. “He needs to get out from under his desk and look at the nation. Come on Roswell.”
Still, Kintigh is standing his ground.
“I understand you’re going to make decisions that aren’t going to make people happy, but to not make decisions would be to not do my job,” said Kintigh.
During the Mayor’s ban 32 animals were euthanized.
On Monday, animal control officers told KRQE News 13 they didn’t kill any animals in the past year because of the rescues.
Wednesday, they retracted that statement saying they had to kill a few.
They did not have a specific number.
The owner of the rescue whose dogs attacked the 9-year-old is expected to be charged sometime this week.