Blount County man faces animal cruelty charges; community steps in to foster

Local News

Animal cruelty charges in Blount County have community members stepping in to foster through the Blount County Animal Center. 

One pup named Sprite has a new home.

“It’s sad. She didn’t ask for him to be her owner, didn’t ask to be tied up like that, treated like that,” said Trisha Majors, Sprite’s foster mom. 

In March, a tip led authorities to the home of Gary McMurray. Inside, a Blount County SPCA report shows 10 dogs were living in unsuitable conditions. 

One died due to injuries. Others were emaciated, suffering from respiratory issues and living without clean water. Photos show buckets of black water on the property. 

“They’re full of love but they’ve never had the chance to give it or show it,” said Majors. 

McMurray was charged with one felony count of aggravated cruelty to animals and nine misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals.

“Being outside like that, having to fight for your food, fight for water, stuff like that. It’s a terrible thing,” said Majors. 

Majors saw Sprite a week after being rescued from the living conditions, she described the dog as being so skinny “she looked like a bag of bones.” It was after their first meeting Majors said she wanted to foster Sprite with the hopes she’ll someday be open for adoption. 

McMurray is due in court on May 25. 

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