Dawn Pennington just charged, Tiffany Woodington beat the rap but husband faces trial, Corinne DiLorenzo due for trial next
COLUMBIA, South Carolina; BENTON COUNTY, Missouri; THAWVILLE, Illinois––Charged with mass animal neglect after 28 dogs and two cats were found dead in their cages at her home on May 22, 2022, fallen “rescue angel” Caroline Dawn Pennington, 47, of Columbia, South Carolina, was a small-time alleged offender compared to Tiffany Woodington and Corinne DiLorenzo.
Several hundred animals allegedly died from neglect at two locations in Missouri and Texas in 2019, in custody of Tiffany Woodington’s All Accounted For rescue. All charges against Tiffany Woodington were dropped in 2020, but her husband and a male associate are to be tried later in 2022 for the alleged Texas offenses.
As many as 600 animals died at Corinne DiLorenzo’s Earth Animal Sanctuary south of Chicago, Illinois in 2018. DiLorenzo is also scheduled for trial later in 2022.
Where was Pennington living?
Pennington, whose much smaller case has so far stirred much greater social media opprobrium, appears to have already been unpopular among the local “rescue” community even before the animal deaths at her home came to light.
ANIMALS 24-7 has been inundated since publication of our June 5, 2022 exposé Accused of starving caged dogs & cats to death, Caroline Dawn Pennington had priors by allegations from former Pennington associates about her previous behavior.
Most of the persons contacting ANIMALS 24-7 have identified themselves to us, while declining to be identified on the record. Most verifiably knew and worked with Pennington, either at the Kershaw County Humane Society or in connection with activities involving other local animal shelters and “rescues.”
None admit to having suspected Pennington of neglecting or abandoning animals. Some, however, profess to have been aware––as the Richland County Sheriff’s Office has hinted––that Pennington was not living in the 4,800-square-foot home at 125 Dibble Lane where the 30 animals allegedly died of starvation and/or dehydration, months before their remains were discovered.
Alleged mystery “boyfriend”
Some say Pennington was living just over the North Carolina state line with a purported boyfriend who also formerly worked for the Kershaw County Humane Society and has worked for several other animal shelters and “rescues” in the Carolinas.
The purported boyfriend is said to have listed 125 Dibble Lane as his address on employment documents. But whether the purported boyfriend’s listed name, common in the Carolinas, is actually his given name has been questioned. He is said to be still married to someone other than Pennington, with two “toddlers,” but in absence of a verifiable name, this cannot be confirmed, either.
All that really is verifiable, so far, is that for months Pennington reported for work at the Kershaw County Humane Society, an obvious source of help with any animal issues she was having, without ever asking for help––at least not in terms her co-workers understood.
Lawyer is Pennington’s sole visible defender
Almost all of the would-be tipsters have expressed fear of being linked to Pennington in any way, and/or fear of retaliation from Pennington and her supposed allies––who, it must be noted, have yet to materialize.
Pennington’s sole defender, as of June 9, 2022, appears to be her attorney, Ally Benevento, who has attributed the mass neglect case to “some significant and serious mental health issues at play that Ms. Pennington is dealing with.”
Fear of association with Pennington seems to be pervasive not only among her critics, but among the several incorporated nonprofit rescues identified to ANIMALS 24-7 as operated by her friends and alleged enablers.
All have taken down any photos and social media postings mentioning Pennington and/or her organization GROWL, short for “Global Rescue Welfare League.”
None of the purported friends and enablers have accepted invitations from ANIMALS 24-7 to share what they know.
This may be because Pennington has almost overnight superseded former Bully Breed Rescue president Heidi Lueders as the least popular person in the constellation of “rescue angels.”
Lueders, who allegedly starved five “rescued” pit bulls to death in their cages at her rented home in Fairfield, Connecticut, was in February 2022 acquitted of cruelty, but was convicted of doing property damage to the home, including by leaving the pit bulls to decompose there.
Lueders in April 2022 was sentenced to serve fifteen months in prison, followed by five years on probation.
To date, the one person who worked alongside Pennington at the Kershaw County Humane Society who has spoken out on the record, either to ANIMALS 24-7 or other media, is board president and volunteer temporary acting director Jamie Woodington, who is not related to the Missouri alleged rescue hoarder Tiffany Woodington.
And Jamie Woodington, who posed for a photo with Pennington just four days before the 30 dead animals were discovered in Pennington’s home, has not yet responded to any of eight questions ANIMALS 24-7 sent her on June 8, 2022 pertaining to other former Kershaw County Humane Society personnel who worked alongside Pennington. One was the purported boyfriend of Pennington; three may have left after conflicts with Pennington.
Go For Wand
Jamie Woodington, a retired racehorse trainer, has been in the media spotlight before. Baltimore Sun reporter Ross Peddicord recalled in March 1994 that she “once galloped horses for Hall of Fame trainer Mack Miller and broke champion Go For Wand as a 2-year-old.”
Go For Wand went on to win 11 of her first 14 races before suffering a compound fracture of her right cannon bone while leading the nationally televised Breeders Cup Distaff at Belmont Park on October 26, 1990. Go For Wand was euthanized the next day.
Pennington was hired by 22-year Kershaw County Humane Society director Sharon Jones, who retired, other Kershaw County Humane Society personnel told ANIMALS 24-7, after clashing with Pennington.
Another Jones, DeeAnn Jones, headed the Kershaw County Humane Society from April 2020 to January 2021. She also left, ANIMALS 24-7 was told, after difficulties with Pennington and board members.
“We do not have an executive director at this time”
Bob Citrullo, who had previously headed three other humane societies, working for seven since April 2007, took over at the Kershaw County Humane Society from July 2021 to December 2021.
Citrullo left to become executive director of the Humane Society of Union County, North Carolina, from January 2022 to June 2022. He was then named executive director of the Humane Society of Harford County, in Fallston, Maryland, according to LinkedIn.
Citrullo as of June 9, 2022 was not yet listed on the Humane Society of Harford County web site and had not yet been introduced by the Humane Society of Harford County on Facebook, either.
“We do not have an executive director at this time,” Kershaw County Humane Society acting director Jamie Woodington told ANIMALS 24-7. “The position has been vacant while we search for a new director of operations. I have been volunteering my time, but have no formal training or education in animal welfare or shelter practice. With this hideous action by a very deceptive person, our whole organization is in a state of shock.
“Have compiled a list”
“We have compiled a list of all animals that Caroline Dawn Pennington pulled with her rescue from the Kershaw County Humane Society,” Jamie Woodington said. “We are turning that list over to the Richland County Sheriff’s Department.
“We were absolutely unaware of any illegal activity that Pennington had previously been involved with before coming to work at the Kershaw County Humane Society in 2018, or at any point during her employment,” Woodington continued, in reference to Pennington’s convictions for income tax evasion and Medicaid fraud in 2010, and for a 2017 offense in Sussex County, Virginia, listed as “defective speedometer,” but bringing “court costs” of $12,100, according to online records, possibly included in “court fines” of $13,500.
(On June 23, 2022, an anonymous caller told ANIMALS 24-7 that the actual penalties were $121 and $130, respectively, indicative of typographical errors in the online records.)
Pennington “worked in several capacities in our building during the course of her employment. Everything from answering phones to eventually becoming staff scheduler and rescue coordinator,” Jamie Woodington confirmed.
“This woman is a master manipulator”
“We did not know that her rescue had not filed the proper paperwork,” Jamie Woodington continued. “She did pull dogs under her GROWL rescue name after filling out the required paperwork for transfer. She also took animals from other organizations and shelters in the area.
“Unfortunately this woman is a master manipulator,” Jamie Woodington told ANIMALS 24-7, “and was able to mislead everyone involved with the Kershaw County Humane Society.
“My focus,” Jamie Woodington added, “is supporting the hardworking people in the building to continue caring for the animals who come in our doors. I have no knowledge of what the hiring practices were when this person was hired. I was told by our business administrator that we do background checks on new hires at this time.”
Steven Clark Woodington
Meanwhile in Cameron County, Texas, and Iroquois County, Illinois, the All Accounted For and Earth Animal Sanctuary “rescue” hoarding cases, discovered in 2019, are at last scheduled for trial before the end of summer 2022.
Both prosecutions have been repeatedly postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic interfering with courthouse proceedings.
Steven Clark Woodington, now 59, not related to Jamie Woodington, and Mark Anthony Treviño, 29, are to go to trial on September 22, 2022, the very last day of summer, for alleged cruelty to 278 dogs and a cat who were found in a warehouse in Los Fresnos, Texas in September 2019.
The Cameron County Sheriff’s Office told media at the time that fewer than half of the dogs were expected to survive. How many did survive is unclear.
Tiffany Lynn Woodington
The animals had been bunched for transport to Steven Clark Woodington’s wife, Tiffany Lynn Woodington, now 52, who was doing business as All Accounted For “rescue” in Cole’s Camp, Missouri.
“Law enforcement, aided by Animal Task Force Officers, arrived at the address of concern,” reported Derek Garcia for ValleyCentral in Harlingen, Texas. Contact was made with Tiffany Woodington,” who “led authorities to an old school bus, a barn and a house where 38 dogs and one cat were discovered alive but in unimaginable condition. It was discovered that approximately 120 dogs and one cat had perished. The animals were in various stages of decay. Some were just bones.
“The Missouri Humane Society Task Force removed the living animals for treatment and returned the following day to collect the remains of the deceased animals for further forensic examination,” Garcia said.
Tiffany Woodington was initially charged with 10 felonies and two misdemeanors, but all charges against her were dropped on December 1, 2020 “without further explanation,” wrote Joyce Coates of the Benton County Enterprise.
In Iroquois County, Illinois, Corinne DiLorenzo, 40, was reportedly to have been tried on July 25, 2022 for felony animal neglect allegedly committed at her former Earth Animal Sanctuary in Thawville, about 100 miles south of Chicago.
That date is now designated for a status hearing, with an actual trial date still indefinite.
DiLorenzo on January 16, 2020 pleaded “not guilty,” ten days after her arrest, and demanded a jury trial.
DiLorenzo “became a public figure when a video she posted in 2014 to social media of her singing to a pig named Bentley garnered national attention,” reported Tiffani Homer for VegNews after DiLorenzo’s arraignment.
DiLorenzo apparently also tried to establish herself as a vegan chef.
But DiLorenzo eventually dropped out of sight.
Jodie Wiederkehr brought missing animals to notice
“In early January 2019,” Homer narrated, “Jodie Wiederkehr—co-founder of Chicago Alliance for Animals and a former friend of DiLorenzo—began searching for DiLorenzo online and found mention of a barn fire at Earth Animal Sanctuary on the fundraising site GoFundMe.
“Surprised that no one in the Chicago animal advocacy community knew about the fire, Wiederkehr eventually learned from DiLorenzo’s ex-partner that all of the animals who had lived at the sanctuary were dead, either from the fire or unknown causes.”
Later in 2019, Homer wrote, “a group led by former Earth Animal Sanctuary board member Melissa Summer Pena found a crude burial site,” holding the remains, the group estimated, “of more than 600 animals.”
DiLorenzo apparently first ran into trouble for hoarding animals in 2010, at a rented home in Peoria, Illinois.
Fire in 2014
“In 2013, she moved into a mobile home near Gridley,” Homer said, owned by Tobein Tegard, who operates the Wedrose Acres Animal Sanctuary.
“According to officials,” Homer narrated, “against Tegard’s wishes, DiLorenzo built an enclosure for chickens and pigs on the property. The enclosure caught fire and killed all of the chickens.”
The fire apparently resulted from an electric space heater overloading the wiring.
Asked to leave the Wedrose Acres Animal Sanctuary in April 2014, DiLorenzo started the Earth Animal Sanctuary a month later.
“She would eventually take in hundreds of animals, placed there by private citizens, rescues and public animal control agencies,” including more than 70 animals from DuPage County animal control,” the Chicago Tribune summarized in 2020.
But the Earth Animal Sanctuary lost Illinois nonprofit status in 2016 for “failure to submit the proper yearly documentation,” the Chicago Tribune said.
2018 fire was considered “suspicious”
The September 2, 2018 fire, reported by DiLorenzo’s teenaged son, killed eight pigs, six ducks, six geese and 20 chickens, according to the Iroquois County sheriff’s office.
“The sheriff’s department classified the fire as suspicious,” the Chicago Tribune said. “It appeared an accelerant had been used to start the fire in the duck pen,” with “what (an investigator) identified as a pour pattern leading from the structure to the gate,” where “wooden matches were located.”
A January 2019 call to the Illinois Department of Children & Family Services hotline about suspected neglect of DiLorenzo’s son, the Chicago Tribune continued, brought sheriff’s deputies to the site with a search warrant.
“The son appeared in good health, but officials found so much filth in the home that investigators forbade him from residing there, according to the report,” the Chicago Tribune summarized.
DiLorenzo has apparently remained not far from Thawville, at addresses in Crete and Normal, Illinois, working for a time as an insurance agent.
Jamaka Petzak says
I wonder how these soulless husks can live with themselves and sleep at night. Substance abuse, I guess, or Rx. It makes no difference.
Sharing with gratitude and all of the usual thoughts and feelings.
George Waters says
Everyone of them is worse than the next.
Every single so called rescue operation should be required to be inspected each and every week by animal rights activists.
I can’t even look at these kinds of articles anymore, as it’s become so prevalent now.
Nobody is going to tell me that there is a God, because there isn’t
Karen Davis says
“God” is “on a journey or perhaps he is sleeping” says the story of Elijah in the Bible.
I have known good people who started animal sanctuaries with good intentions who were ultimately overwhelmed by the occupation. Too many animals, staff and board member conflicts, loneliness and isolation, staffing shortages, exhaustion, illnesses mental and physical – these afflictions, usually in combination, finally wore them out. No excuse but an explanation for what can happen to a person unequipped to handle the unanticipated load of trials and tribulations of running a rescue operation.
Reading this account of the women in question makes me wonder if they ever truly cared about the animals in their charge and what motivated them to get into this business. They look very physically unfit. Hard to imagine them doing any actual animal care work.
Poor animals, cursed even by their “rescuers” and “caregivers.”
Karen Davis, PhD, President, United Poultry Concerns. http://www.upc-online.org
Nukhet Hendricks says
Because we make a lifetime promise to our rescue animals, from time to time, county humane societies contact us to rescue a dog in their care. Danny & Ron’s Rescue has rescued dogs from the Kershaw County Humane Society as they do from many other humane organizations.
Our relationship with Ms. Pennington was limited to her work on behalf of the Kershaw County Humane Society. Ms. Pennington, as the adoption manager, would call Danny & Ron’s Rescue and ask us to take in a dog either because they didn’t have room or the dog had expensive medical needs.
We had no interaction or relationship with Ms. Pennington or any non-profit affiliated with her beyond rescuing some dogs from Kershaw County Humane Society at their request.
Danny & Ron’s Rescue is horrified by the tragic event whereby 30 animals died in unbelievable and inhumane circumstances. It is our sincere hope that the authorities in Law Enforcement prosecute the responsible party to the full extent of the law
Like all in the animal rescue community, our hearts are breaking for the suffering and pain of these 30 lives lost.
Merritt Clifton says
The above, from the executive director of Danny & Ron’s Rescue, is the first on-the-record response that ANIMALS 24-7 has received from any of the nonprofit animal rescue organizations that may have interacted with Dawn Pennington, of which there appear to have been many, both in the Carolinas and in the New York/New Jersey area.
Mary Lou Seymour says
Thank you for the continuing coverage of Pennington. Please report when the case comes to court