ST. LANDRY PARISH, La. (KLFY) – Animal control in St. Landry now has an investigator that will launch investigations addressing any animal related issues as they arise.

Parish President, Jessie Bellard, admitted that over the last few weeks animal control has received numerous calls about neglect or animal attacks.

The question was who is ultimately in charge of launching an investigation. Would it be parish government and animal control, or the sheriff’s office?

It was decided that St. Landry Parish Animal Control would have an investigator, who started Monday.

“It stops the back and forth. Investigations will be handled by parish government. There will be no more issues,” Bellard says.

The investigator will be commissioned by the sheriff’s office but will be on parish government’s payroll.

Bellard explained, “They will strictly do animal control investigations and report here to us.”

“He can do anything as far as police power. He is post-certified officer. He has arrest authority, but he works for parish government not the sheriff’s office,” added Bellard.

He explained that the investigations will be done in a timely manner because that will be the sole priority.

Once the investigation is complete, the necessary steps will be taken.

“If the investigation concludes with an arrest, that goes to the DA’s office. If it is just an investigation that does not need to be concluded with an arrest, it will be filed and will be open records,” explained Bellard.

 Bellard also said there is a possibility of adding a second investigator to the payroll in the future.