NEWPORT — Carteret County deputies arrested Jeffrey Lee Johnson, 65, of Newport, Thursday after residents reported concerns over the possible hoarding and mistreatment of animals at his property on East Southwinds Drive.

According to a press release issued Friday by Carteret County Sheriff’s Office chief detective Jason Wank, deputies working alongside county animal control officers seized 22 pit bulls suffering from extreme neglect. One dog was in need of immediate medical attention.

Deputy Jessica Newman, who investigated the case, reported numerous puppies chained to stakes in the ground with irritated skin, cuts and open sores on their bodies.

Mr. Johnson was charged with one felony and one misdemeanor count of cruelty to animals and was scheduled for his first court appearance Monday. He was also charged with violating the county’s solid waste ordinance. He was released from jail after posting a $10,000 bond.

Carteret County Humane Society Animal Shelter manager Rachel Hardin said Friday the dogs were brought to the shelter, where they remained as of Friday afternoon.

With the shelter already at capacity prior to the seizure, Ms. Hardin said workers had to move shelter dogs around to make room for the additional dogs.

“We have reached out to other rescues to see if they can take some of the dogs,” she said.


Editor's note: This article and headline were last updated at 6:49 p.m. Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. 

(4) comments


Put him in a 2x4 cage and don't feed him for a couple weeks.


Dog fighting, puppy mill, animal hoarder? I am glad we have a felony animal cruelty law on the books many states don't.I hope this is not pled down to a slap on the wrist, a lifetime ban on owning any animals at the very least.


Great idea JohnnyR. Let the punishment fit the crime. Hopefully the judge will not be sympathetic with this his pleas and put him in a cage for a long time. A big shout out to the concerned citizens who did the right thing in reporting this monster to the authorities.

Always A Teacher

I agree with Johnny R. Cruelty to any animal should be met with severe punishment. Lock him up with hardly any food and water only when it rains. No bathroom privileges either. You make it, you stew in it.

Welcome to the discussion.

As a privately owned web site, we reserve the right to edit or remove comments that contain spam, advertising, vulgarity, threats of violence, racism, anti-Semitism, or personal/abusive/condescending attacks on other users or goading them. The same applies to trolling, the use of multiple aliases, or just generally being a jerk. Enforcement of this policy is at the sole discretion of the site administrators and repeat offenders may be blocked or permanently banned without warning.