Macon police say dog pound suspect acted alone

MACON (MCT) — Crystal Gale Fessler, the woman accused of breaking into a Macon animal rescue and freeing dozens of dogs resulting in a fight that left three dead and 15 injured, acted alone, Macon police said Monday.

At a news conference, police said Fessler, 36, got into the All About Animals facility near Central City Park through a gap in the fence. Police said they don’t think Fessler is part of any organized dogfighting operation.

Police said they were led to Fessler after receiving a tip from a man who told them a white woman showed up at a Marathon gas station on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard the morning of the incident. Fessler was complaining of a dog bite, and she told the man she had just let some dogs loose at a shelter, police said.

Fessler, of Brookhaven Drive in Bibb County, was arrested Thursday afternoon and charged with criminal trespass and 13 counts of cruelty to animals. Police allege that sometime between the night of Oct. 16 and the morning of Oct. 17, Fessler got into the All About Animals facility and let several dogs, many of them pit bull and bulldog mixes, out of their pens. A fight ensued, and volunteers arriving at the shelter the morning of Oct. 17 found two dogs dead. Another died a short time later.

Several other dogs were severely injured, and even more were traumatized by the fatal fight, according to volunteers with the rescue group.