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Lee County couple charged with animal neglect

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Lee County Sheriff's Office
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David Sams and Gina Sams.

Dogs, goats, horses, donkeys, ducks, chickens, geese, rabbits, lizards, a cat, a peacock, a turkey, a hedgehog, and a chinchilla were all surrendered to the Animal Rescue League of Iowa.

A Lee County couple was charged with seven counts of animal neglect following a second search of their property.

Lee County detectives served an initial search warrant at the rural Argyle property last month.

David and Gina Sams were instructed to clean up the property and reduce the number of animals in their care, to ensure they are being treated safely and humanely.

But a second search this week led to their arrest.

Dogs, goats, horses, donkeys, ducks, chickens, geese, rabbits, lizards, a cat, a peacock, a turkey, a hedgehog, and a chinchilla were all surrendered to the Animal Rescue League of Iowa.

Lee County Sheriff Stacy Weber said animal neglect cases are an ongoing problem in Iowa.

Weber will ask the county’s board of supervisors to enact an ordinance to assist in the enforcement of laws regarding the care of animals.

PAW Animal Shelter of Lee County, Keokuk Animal Services, and the Lee County Attorney’s Office also assisted with the investigation.

Jane Carlson covers west central Illinois and southeast Iowa for Tri States Public Radio.