Animal Breeder Who Surrendered Over 300 Animals to Area Rescues Facing Criminal Charges

By Jeremy Coumbes on April 21, 2021 at 3:23pm

The animal breeder who surrendered over 300 animals to central Illinois rescues including PAWS of Jacksonville now faces criminal charges.

In September of last year, Hapke’s Bernese Mountain Dogs Breeding in Clayton, Illinois was shut down after the Quincy Humane Society received reports of neglect at the facility for more than a year.

43 year old Andrea Hapke of Clayton, appeared in Adams County Court last week where she was charged with two counts of a 1st violation of the Humane Care for Animals Act.

PAWS of Jacksonville spent much of the Labor Day weekend last year making several trips to the facility eventually bringing back 37 cats and 68 dogs, most of which were dehydrated, malnourished, and had not been cleaned or bathed in quite some time.

P.A.W.S. volunteers said at the time, that conditions at the breeding site bordered on a hoarding operation, with the vast majority of animals being kept in small, overcrowded cages with little or no food, water, blankets or toys.

In total over 300 animals were removed from the facility with many going to animal rescue shelters in Quincy, Springfield, Winchester and White Hall among others.

At the time of the shut down, then Executive Director of the Quincy Humane Society Sally Westerhoff told KHQA in Quincy she didn’t believe the owner would face any charges after she had negotiated with the Department of Agriculture for a suspension of her breeder’s license which triggered the surrender of animals.

According to the KHQA report, Westerhoff called the scene horrifying and said she didn’t think the more than 300 animals who were rescued even scratched the surface of what was going on at the facility.

The charges of violation of the Humane Care for Animals Act are class B misdemeanors. If found guilty Hapke could face up to six months in jail or a possible large fine and probation.

Hapke is next due in Adams County Court on May 12th.