News3 News Now Investigators


Animal shelter sues Fremont, other local shelter

Posted at 5:15 PM, Mar 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-09 19:29:46-05

FREMONT, Neb. (KMTV) — After being accused of mismanagement and animal neglect for nearly a year, a Fremont animal shelter is fighting back.

The Dodge County Humane Society is set to have its contract with Fremont terminated in late March, due to a city council vote late last month. They filed a lawsuit against the city and its council, asking a judge to reinstate the contract.

The complaint against Fremont argues that the city didn't follow proper procedures when terminating the contract, and that they didn't violate the contract. Read the full complaint here.

May 7, 2020: Allegations of animal abuse, harassment fly in Fremont over humane society controversy

That includes a claim that an October letter to Dodge County Humane Society's attorney, which outlines the city's findings of violations, was not considered to be a termination warning. A board formed by the city council found Dodge County Humane Society failed to cooperate with local police on dogs at large, enforcement of laws and record keeping, among other things.

City Administrator Brian Newton said Fremont will "vigorously" defend itself.

Since this is a matter of litigation, the City has no comment other to say that we will vigorously defend ourselves in this case.

Feb. 4, 2021: After claims of animal neglect and mismanagement, Fremont adds contract with second shelter

In a separate lawsuit, Dodge County Humane Society also says FurEver Home, another animal shelter that holds a new contract with Fremont, acted "wrongfully, intentionally, and maliciously" by entering the contract with Fremont. It argues FurEver Home interfered with its economic relationship with the city, and seeks damages. Read the full complaint here.

FurEver Home founder Deb Newill provided KMTV with the following statement.

The lawsuit by Dodge County Humane Society is an unfortunate event. Their lawsuit is meritless, and Furever Home will vigorously defend against it. Furever Home is not responsible for the loss of DCHS’s contract. The City of Fremont terminated the DCHS contract, for cause, at a public hearing. Also at a public hearing, the City Council accepted Furever Home’s bid for animal shelter services. The City Council made both decisions on an informed basis. Furever Home has always had a strong partnership with the City of Fremont and its citizens. We will move past this lawsuit and we look forward to serving the animals of the community in our new capacity as animal shelter.

On the phone, Dodge County Humane Society's attorney, Thomas Thomsen, declined to comment further on either lawsuit.

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