Charges dropped against Dalena Hall

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Reporter - Lauren Adams
Photojournalist - David Dycus

MCCRACKEN COUNTY, KY-   What prosecutors say Dalena Hall did at the McCracken County Humane Society-improperly euthanizing cats- thrust her into the limelight.

Her lawyer, Jeremy Ian Smith, says a judge's reversal of the case will not change that.

"People are always gonna be saying she got away with it, loophole here, loophole there," he said Friday.

In August, a jury found Hall guilty on ten counts of improperly euthanizing animals at the Humane Society back in September 2011.  That same day, Smith filed paperwork to appeal that verdict.

Circuit Judge Tim Kaltenbach reversed a jury's decision Thursday. The order reversing the charges cited the fact the Commonwealth failed to prove the McCracken County Humane Society was an animal control agency.

"She couldn't have committed the crime if she wasn't in the place," Smith said.

Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Todd Jones prosecuted the case and admits he is disappointed, "I certainly believe she committed the crimes."

But he said, he does not consider the case a total loss, "In the long haul, McCracken County is better off and the animals of McCracken County are better off now."

For his part, Smith says things ended up exactly how they should have, "I wanted to make sure she would never spend a day in jail over this."

Terry Vannerson, Director of the Humane Society calls Hall an 'exemplary' employee and says she is 'ecstatic' with the outcome of the case. Hall's hours were reduced but Vannerson said that was because business had slowed.  For now, Hall will continue to work 30 hours.

Beau Anderson, who also worked at the Humane Society, plead guilty to animal cruelty in September.  He served a 60 day sentence and was released last month.

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