MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - The family dog 'Kapone', which was reportedly in the custody of a Memphis Animal Shelter employee before he went missing, was found alive in Mississippi and returned to his owners.
The Shoup family identified the 11-year-old male pit bull after an anonymous tip led authorities to a home in Senatobia on December 20, 2011.
Brooke Shoup last saw her beloved Kapone, and her other dog Jersey, on June 24th. Shoup said she came home to find both dogs had escaped from the backyard of her Cordova home. She said the fence in her backyard had been damaged during a spring storm.
Shoup said witnesses told her both dogs had been picked up by an Animal Control worker, later identified as Demetria Hogan. Knowing neither dog had tags or a collar, she went down to the shelter the next morning. She quickly found Jersey, but Kapone was nowhere to be found.
Shoup, feeling ignored by shelter workers and management, filed a police report, called the media and waited.
Kapone's disappearance quickly became a symbol of persisting problems at the Memphis Animal Shelter, with banners hung around town offering an $8,000 reward for information on his whereabouts.
Nearly three weeks later, Memphis police went searching for Demetria Hogan, an arrest warrant in hand. The animal control officer turned herself in to authorities and was charged with two counts of cruelty to animals. She has since been fired from Memphis Animal Services.
Memphis Mayor also called for an independent audit of MAS, which was conducted by the Memphis Rotary Club. In the November 2011 report, several systematic flaws were found at the shelter. The audit also reported a lack of employee training and allegations of workers involved in dog-fighting rings.