Butler County woman charged in severe rabbit cruelty case, over 160 dead, police say

A Butler County woman faces charges of animal cruelty following the discovery of hundreds of rabbits in severe neglect, resulting in numerous deaths last November, investigators say.

State police say they responded to a residence in Franklin Township following a report of potential rabbit disease. According to the criminal complaint, authorities found 160 deceased rabbits, some reduced to skeletons, in the garage. The deaths were attributed not to disease but to severe animal abuse.

An additional 137 rabbits were discovered living among the dead in deplorable conditions, confined to unclean cages without access to food or water, investigators say.

Ruth Thompson of ANNA Shelter commented, “For me, anytime there are live animals forced to live with dead animals, I think to me that describes, defines hell.”

Police say they also found four dogs and two cats living in unsuitable conditions, although they were otherwise in good health. The shelter has already made 25 of the rescued rabbits available for adoption.