Nashville animal science teacher charged after emu dies

Tennessee

LONGREACH, AUSTRALIA – MARCH 19: A emu fondly named ‘Stan’ is seen during a water run, abandoned just after hatching he was found while mustering on a neighbouring property and was raised and now released by the Walkers onto ‘Rio Station’ on March 19, 2014 in Longreach, Australia. Queensland, Australia’s second-largest state, is currently suffering from its widest spread drought on record. Almost 80% of the region is now declared affected. The Australian government recently approved an emergency drought relief package of A$320m, of which at least A$280m is allocated for loans to assist eligible farm businesses to recover. (Photo by Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee authorities say a Nashville area high school teacher is facing a misdemeanor animal cruelty charge after an emu kept in her care at the school died.

News outlets report 33-year-old Jessica Lumpkins was charged Wednesday after Metro Animal Care and Control discovered that an emu at McGavock High School had died. Animal control says four alpacas in the care of Lumpkins, an animal sciences teacher, had died at the school previously.

Public Health Department spokesman Brian Todd says inspectors, on surprise visits, had told Lumpkins the animals were inadequately fed and kennels weren’t clean. Todd says Lumpkins was told the emu appeared thin and that when officers returned, the emu was dead.

Metro Schools spokeswoman Olivia Brown says the remaining animals will be relocated.

Lumpkins couldn’t immediately be located for comment.

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