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Carl Lewis | The Chronicle
Former Fletcher Animal Control Officer Timothy Peek, 55, of Fletcher, was arrested Thursday on felony charges of animal cruelty.
Former Fletcher Animal Control Officer Timothy Peek, 55, of Fletcher, was arrested Thursday on felony charges of animal cruelty.

FLETCHER — Former Fletcher Animal Control Officer Timothy Peek, 55, of Fletcher, was arrested Thursday on felony charges of animal cruelty. The charges are the result of a lengthy criminal investigation by Fletcher police into conditions discovered at the town’s animal shelter on Feb. 15, during a prolonged period of severe weather.

Four dogs were removed from the shelter on Feb. 15 by a Lawton resident alerted to the conditions in which the dogs were being housed by social media posts. That individual later contacted Fletcher Mayor Dick Herrin, who in turn contacted Fletcher police.

A probable cause affidavit filed Thursday in Comanche County District Court alleges that “During the subsequent investigation, it was discovered that Mr. Peek had not fed or watered the four dogs under his care, nor cleaned the kennel, from 11 February 2021 at 0800 to 15 February 2021 at approximately 1830 hours, for a combined total of 106 hours during which temperatures ranged from a high of 24 degrees Fahrenheit to a low of -5 degrees Fahrenheit.”

The affidavit details evidence observed and collected by Fletcher police during their investigation and subsequent interviews with Peek and several witnesses.

“During Mr. Peek’s interview, he admitted that he had materials to reinforce the dog kennel … and that he could have housed the dogs at alternate areas for the duration of the storm,” the affidavit states.

The affidavit indicates Peek told police during an interview that he was unaware of the severity of the coming winter storm, but police say they discovered social media posts made by Peek detailing ways to prepare animal housing for inclement weather and at least one post warning of the storm’s forecasted severity days ahead of the storm’s arrival.

During his arrest by police Thursday, Peek could be heard arguing with officers about his own dog’s care. When Peek asked officers who would care for his dog, one officer asked in reply, “What about those four dogs…”

Before the officer could finish asking about the dogs removed during the storm, Peek interrupted, angrily blurting out, “F**K them dogs!”

Peek is being held in the Comanche County Detention Center in lieu of a $100,000 bond.