POSTED: 4:34 pm EDT July 13, 2007
UPDATED: 6:15 pm EDT July 13, 2007
STARK COUNTY, Ohio — Two Stark County sisters own a lion cub, a coyote and a slew of other exotic animals, but now the animal lovers are upset because two of their bear cubs are dead and they believe someone killed them.
Linda Elexander and Melanie Szegedi said they love their animals and pets, but they are now under investigation by the Magnolia police chief.
Alexander and Szegedi are upset and believe someone may have poisoned their two bears. They also believe the culprit may be behind the disappearance of other exotic animals they have had.
The sisters still own a young lion cub and inside a trailer are raccoons and other animals such as potbelly pigs and 18 dogs.
Police Chief Jeff Hager said there is feces everywhere inside the trailer and the stench is strong.
He said he believes the bears may have died from dehydration.
The sisters say they run an animal sanctuary and they are financially strapped.
They said they plan on moving somewhere else within a week.
Hager said he will send his findings to the Animal Humane Society.
A former Columbiana County officer said she has removed hundreds of animals from one of the sister’s homes in the past and she had also been in trouble with her animals in South Carolina.