UPDATE: Humane Officer Makes Up Animal Cruelty Story

By: Cathleen Moxley, Courtney Rochon Email
By: Cathleen Moxley, Courtney Rochon Email

UPDATE 5/15 @ 11:53 p.m.

Steve Whitehair has posted bond.

He is being charged with obstructing an officer and reporting false information to an officer.

He faces up to two years in prison and more charges could follow.

His bond was set at $10,000.

The Parkersburg Humane Society has suspended Whitehair from all duties immediately.
UPDATE: 5/15

For the past week, Wood County Sheriff's detectives have been trying to track down a man that reportedly killed eight dogs on the Interstate.

Well a major arrest has been made in the case but it's not the person responsible for killing any dogs.

Steve Whitehair is the Humane Officer with the Parkersburg Humane Society.

He was arrested Friday.

Wood County Sheriff's Detectives say Whitehair made up an elaborate story about someone posing as police officer and that the culprit was on the run.

"I thought I was helping out the facility and I tried to help them out the wrong way. Just with everything that is going wrong with the city and county financially, I just thought it would show that they're doing a good job," said Whitehair.

He is being charged with obstructing an officer and reporting false information to an officer.

He faces up to two years in prison and more charges could follow.

His bond was set at $10,000.

The Parkersburg Humane Society has suspended Whitehair from all duties immediately.

They say they want the community to know that this incident is not indicicative of the values of the Humane Society.

More importantly, they hope this doesn't affect the community's support of the animals.


Authorities continue to search for two suspects they say committed two different crimes in one animal cruelty case.

It all happened Friday when Humane Officer Steve Whitehair says a man threw eight dogs onto the road, killing all of them.

Whitehair says there was another man on the scene in an unmarked vehicle claiming to be a state trooper who was investigating the case.

However, State Police tell us no troopers were at the incident.

Authorities say the man who stated he was a trooper was driving a black car and was dressed nicely. They say he's about six feet tall and slender.

Whitehair says no charges can be filed against the man who allegedly threw the dogs onto the road, because he can't be located.

Officials also say they can't release the names of the suspects because they're not sure they gave them the right names.

So now, the Wood County Sheriff's Department and the West Virginia State Police are working to find the man accused of killing the dogs, as well as the man who allegedly posed as a state trooper.

"We don't need anybody impersonating officers. There's a law against that, and if this person's located he will be prosecuted. Also, the person who threw the dogs, when that person's located I can assure you they'll be prosecuted to the fullest extent," Corporal Mark Mayhugh, with the W.Va. State Police, said.

Officer Whitehair says the man accused of killing the dogs will face eight counts of animal cruelty, and Corp. Mayhugh says the man who allegedly impersonated an officer will face charges for that.

Anyone who has any information on this case is asked to call the Wood County Sheriff's Department at (304) 424-1834, or the W.Va. State Police at (304) 420-4600.

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  • by animal lover Location: pksburg on May 21, 2009 at 12:22 PM
    I would like someone explain to me why some people think he should go to jail for the mistake he made the only thing he did was hurt himself & loss his job that he loved . The people who did abuse animals only get fines. well i think they should go to jail for that- not just a fine and look at people who abuse kids they just get them taken away- no jail . He didn't hurt any animals ,or hurt anyone but himself. people lie everyday
  • by Anonymous on May 20, 2009 at 05:43 AM
    you ppl still on this. their are more important issues here than some imaginary mutts.
  • by Jon Location: Belpre on May 20, 2009 at 03:34 AM
    A little off the subject here, but was wondering if WTAP could use "spell check" on comments being posted. Or would that be considered changing the voice of the person posting the comment?
  • by noname Location: wood county on May 19, 2009 at 05:56 AM
    The ONLY reason whitehair confessed is because he knew he was caught and had no alternative! Those who support this low life apparently don't know him as well as they thought they did.
  • by Zappa Location: P-burg on May 19, 2009 at 05:42 AM
    This guy craves attention and he got it , he is like a fireman that sets a fire and tries to put it out because he wants the attention and wants to be recognized as a hero , he has a big EGO to feed and wants to be recognized and noticed. He broke the law and should be prosecuted for his wrong doings
  • by Anonymous on May 18, 2009 at 11:45 PM
    Yes what steve whitehair did was wrong but you now something he is the only male that works at the human office. and another thing about 2 years ago a human officer form the facuilty kicked in someone door and we didnt see him get the media attention or any charges brought against him. Why is this man any different.Why should whitehair family be put through all the meda attention when ths man 2 year ago wasnt or his family.Also i feel that everybody at the faculity needs to be investigated not just whitehair because i have heard that on person has broke the law all the time and you dont see them getting fired or charges broght against them I guess in this town it just who you now anymore no matter if it is right or worng. I THINK PEOPLE JUST NEED TO BACK OFF AND STOP RUNNING THERE MOUTH AND FOCUS MORE ON REALLY CRIMINALS LIKE DRUG DEALERS MURDERS and child pornography and sex offenders
  • by Joe Location: Wood county on May 18, 2009 at 06:30 PM
    Yes what Steve Whitehair did was wrong but what about his family and childern look at what the media is doing to them. At least he came clean and was man about it unlike are city officials they lie and steal and they don't get nothing out of there is the really snake in the grass and another thing you got a guy in Wood county that was charged with child pornography but you don't see him getting the media attention and the comments like this man.
  • by eileen Location: pakersburg on May 18, 2009 at 11:00 AM
    wow steven whitehair messed up big time a good coach and he takes care of animal now he messed up its hard to find a job . i don't know much about him but i wish him luck. i hope he don't do stupid things like that again.
  • by Karen on May 18, 2009 at 10:32 AM
    Animal Lover: They can't let this go BECAUSE HE COMMITTED A CRIME. Plus, HE ADMITTED IT. HE CONFESSED! The authorities can't ignore the fact that HE WENT TO THE MEDIA AND PUBLICIZED THIS HIMSELF! The judge is the only one who can decide what his crime warrants as far as punishment.... THAT's who will decide. Not us.
  • by animal lover Location: pksburg on May 18, 2009 at 10:26 AM
    I`ve known steve for a long while now and anyone that knows him would agree that he's a great guy. yeah maybe he made a mistake but who hasn't. now they make a big deal out of it. I think they need to go after real criminals . oh yeah- can't do that cause they can't get them like murderers, drug dealers etc. but they make a great deal on this, i think alot people need to get a life. I know for a fact he loves animal and he like his job working and helping them too so why don't they leave it be instead of making it everyone business?
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