MARION, S.C. (AP) — A former South Carolina official is accused of taking 14 cats from a shelter and killing them.

The State Law Enforcement Division said Thursday 51-year-old Marion Richardson is charged with misconduct in office and animal euthanasia violation.

Warrants say Richardson and his supervisor took the cats from the county’s animal shelter, and Richardson shot them to death. Henry Rogers of Mullins is also charged with the euthanasia violation.

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Richardson was fired as the county’s code enforcement officer Sept. 9 after the cats were found dead. The shelter’s director told authorities the two claimed the cats were going to a farmer.

Richardson’s attorney Rose Mary Parham says he was asked to dispose of the cats, and shooting them in the back of the head is more humane than using carbon monoxide.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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