Watch: RCSD Investigator Receives National Award
Columbia , S.C. (WOLO) — The ASPCA has recognized a Richland County investigator for her efforts in combating dog fighting in the midlands.
Senior Investigator Holly Wagner received the “ASPCA Champion for Animals,” for her dedication to end dog fighting in the midlands.
“To be recognized out of all the officers in the United States, not just in South Carolina, it’s humbling,” said Wagner.
For Wagner, fighting animal cruelty is a cause she’s made a central focus in her career.
“A lot of things were just not being done when it comes to animals,” explained Wagner. “They weren’t being investigated as crimes, it was just something animal control would come pick up the animals.”
Investigator Wagner says research on the issue revealed the severity of the issue here in the midlands, particularly animal neglect and dog fighting.
“Quite frankly, it’s because of the gambling,” said Wagner. “We have evidence of dog fights in Richland County where the pot is upwards of $40,000.”
To combat the problem, Investigator Wagner works closely with several organizations forming an animal cruelty task force, which has led to more prosecutions. Investigator Wagner says she hopes to continue making progress to make a difference.
“We hope to continue to find people that are committing these crimes and get it taken care of,” said Wagner. “Whether that’s jail time or whatever it ends up being, we’re going to go after them and get them.”