38 Cats Found Living in 'Deplorable' Conditions Inside Van: Cops

The cats were found after a concerned passerby contacted authorities.

Authorities in Georgia say they found 38 cats living in "deplorable conditions" inside a van.

A concerned passerby contacted Sandy Springs Police early on April 26 about a possible homeless family living in a blue Dodge Caravan in a Kroger parking lot.

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"As I approached vehicle, I detected a strong odor of cat urine and feces," the responding officer wrote in an incident report.

The officer found one woman and dozens cats inside the van, according to Sgt. Forrest Bohannon of Sandy Springs Police.

"The condition of the vehicle was deplorable and it appeared that the women had been living in the vehicle with the animals," Sgt. Bohannon told IE.com.

The woman inside the car, 41-year-old Alexandra Wingate, told the officer that she and her mother, 70-year-old Sharyn Wingate, had driven to Kroger to buy water. She said she was waiting with the cats as her mom shopped, according to the incident report.

As the officer waited for Sharyn Wingate to return, Alexandra Wingate claimed they had so many cats because they worked with a local veterinary clinic to place the animals in homes, the report says. She denied they were homeless.

The officer learned that the women had active warrants issued out of Dekalb County for cruelty to animals and took them both into custody.

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The women were taken to the Dekalb County Jail, where they both remain on $5,000 bond each, according to jail records.

Fulton County Animal Services took the cats to a shelter, Sgt. Bohannon said. A mom and her new kittens were among them.

LifeLine Animal Project, which manages Fulton County Animal Services, said most of the cats are ready to be adopted. Contact adoptions@fultonanimalservices.com or call 404-613-0357 for further information about adopting them.

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