More than 60 exotic birds dead in animal abuse case

RAVENEL, S.C. (WCIV) — A South Carolina woman who hired a handyman to look after 72 exotic birds for six months returned home Christmas Eve to find all but seven dead, authorities say.

The Charleston County Sheriff’s Office says it is trying to identify a suspect wanted on animal cruelty charges in connection to the case on Chaplin’s Landing Road in Ravenel.

According to the sheriff’s office, the woman who owned the birds left on July 25 for an extended work absence.

The woman told deputies she hired a local handyman, known to her only as Shaun, to look after the birds while she was away, paying him $150 a week.

The woman says when she returned to her home on Christmas Eve, the house was a wreck and only seven of the birds were alive. It appeared the birds had not been given food or water in a long time, the woman told deputies.

Deputies say the woman last spoke to the handyman Nov. 6, at which point he told her via text message that everything was fine.

If you have any information about this incident, contact the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office at 843-202-1700.

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Tyler Barker
Tyler Barker is currently the News Director and Digital Content Manager for WOAY-TV. He was promoted to this job in Mid-November. He still will fill in on weather from time to time. You can follow Tyler on Facebook and Twitter @wxtylerb. Have any news tips or weather questions? Email him at tbarker@woay.com