Whispering Acres Rescue shut down by the Town of Kirkwood

Published: Aug. 19, 2022 at 10:52 PM EDT
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KIRKWOOD (WBNG) -- The Whispering Acres Rescue in Kirkwood has been officially shut down.

Co-owner Jeff Barrett claimed after a few residents contacted the town making what he said are false allegations of animal abuse, the town shut down their establishment.

Town of Kirkwood Supervisor Lew Grubham admitted to the allegations being the reason why they originally looked into the farm. He asked the Town of Kirkwood Code Enforcer to look into the farm to make sure everything was up-to-date, which is how they discovered the farm owners allegedly did not own the property. He said the owners of the animal rescue needed proper documentation to operate, which had to be signed by the owner of the property, which he claimed they never received. Due to this, they had to send out a cease and desist order.

“Kind of sorry this is turning out this way. We thought we were trying to do something good here to make them legal there so they wouldn’t have a problem, but as it turned out, it became a problem,” said Lew Grubham.

Grubham said the town was only trying to obey the law, but Barrett claimed the code enforcer was given all the proper documentation and they were still asked to leave.

“We’ve had no other alternative but to turn and shut the rescue down for a short time and we put our house up for sale everything in trying to continue to saving these animals and keeping them from being abused,” said Barrett.

Grubham said the owners were given until September 8 to leave the property and stated they were eligible for an extension. However, he admits the code office was not forthcoming about that information.

“If they came and said they needed 30 more days, generally we would’ve gave them more time... We didn’t have that discussion,” said Grubham.

The owners of the farm denied all allegations of abuse of the animals and Grubham stated he is sorry for the way this has turned out.