ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A former employee has filed a lawsuit against the Stray Rescue Animal Shelter.
The suit filed Wednesday on behalf of Kristin Boyd names the shelter, founder Randy Grim, several employees and the entire board of directors as defendants.
Speaking at her attorneys’ office, Boyd painted herself as a whistle-blower who was let go for pointing out problems behind the scenes at the shelter on Pine near Jefferson.
“It was my whole life,” she explained. “That place was my entire life. I worked six days a week … I was sometimes there seven days a week.”
But she was fired earlier this year after a little over three years on the job.
Boyd said it was because she felt obligated to speak up about the problems she saw, even though she realized her job was likely on the line.
“Anyone that even thinks about saying anything about what they’re doing in there, they’re gone,” she claimed. “They get rid of them.”
Boyd described one instance of discrimination she claimed to have witnessed.
“A black girl came in to give her application to work and as soon as she turned around, before she even opened the door to walk out, Teri (Reid, director of operations) tossed it in the trash can, right in front of me,” she said.
She also claimed that African-American staffers were described as “too ghetto” behind their backs.
Her other allegations include that Stray Rescue is a “no kill” shelter in name only, often putting dogs down, and that a distemper outbreak was not properly handled and instead was turned into an opportunity to raise “thousands of dollars” in public donations.
An attorney for Stray Rescue issued a written statement saying that Boyd’s lawsuit contains “false allegations” and that the shelter has strict anti-discrimination policies in place.
Instead, according to the statement issued by Burton Garland Jr., Boyd was a disgruntled ex-employee who was upset she wasn’t allowed to adopt a shelter dog because her “live-in boyfriend” had previously been convicted of aminal cruelty.
When she was told someone else had adopted the animal, Boyd became “irate, threatening and belligerent” according to the shelter’s attorney.
He went on to say that “Stray Rescue will defend itself vigorously against these baseless allegations and is very confident it will be fully vindicated when the evidence is presented in court.”