Manager of Pointe Coupee Animal Services arrested on charges of malfeasance in office, theft
ST. LANDRY PARISH - Nearly one year after Stacey McKnight became the Manager of Pointe Coupee Animal Service, she was arrested by St. Landry Parish authorities and jailed on multiple charges, according to the local jail.
According to records from St. Landry Parish Jail, the 53-year-old was charged on four counts of theft, one count of malfeasance in office, two counts of theft, one count of theft of livestock, and one count of injuring public records.
As the former St. Landry Parish Animal Center's executive director, McKnight retired from the position in 2020.
She took on her role as manager of Pointe Coupee Parish Animal Service on March 10 of last year.
Shortly after her arrest, Pointe Coupee Parish President Major Thibaut told WBRZ Friday (March 12) that McKnight has been an exceptional shelter manager and animal control officer.
He also confirmed that she will remain employed with the parish, in harmony with 'innocent until proven guilty' standards.
Thibaut says, "unless anything comes out of the investigation that affected her duties in Pointe Coupee Parish she will stay in her job."
An official report from St. Landry Parish deputies explained the reason for Mcknight's arrest by stating, “On October 20, 2020, deputies with the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office responded to a complaint at the St. Landry Parish Animal Control Center regarding numerous theft complaints involving livestock, files and parish property.”
The report goes on to say McKnight was seen taking some of the missing animals and it was later discovered that she took them to her home in Ethel.
Deputies add that after taking the animals, McKnight took to social media to post pictures of some of the animals on her personal Facebook page.
Authorities say they followed up on the social media pictures and eyewitness accounts by speaking directly with McKnight.
The official arrest document states, "When questioned by detectives, Stacey McKnight admitted to possessing and/or removing the following property from the St. Landry Parish Animal Control Center:
-Birds – Peacock (4) and Geese (4);
-Several animal carriers;
-Several case files;
-Miscellaneous animal documentation;
-Shirt collar insignia pins;
-Insurance cards for parish vehicles; and
-Logbook pertaining to donations, belonging to St. Landry Animal Control."
At this point, the report notes that Sheriff Bobby J. Guidroz and other officials conducted multiple interviews with St. Landry Parish Animal Control personnel and St. Landry Parish Government officials.
The document from authorities concludes by stating, "It was determined that Stacey Sonnier Alleman McKnight did not have permission and/or authorization to remove any property from St. Landry Parish Animal Control."
"On March 12, 2021, Stacey Sonnier Alleman McKnight turned herself in at the St. Landry Parish Jail and was charged with Theft (8 counts), Injuring Public Records and Malfeasance in Office."
WBRZ is continuing to monitor the case and will update readers as authorities provide additional information related to McKnight's arrest.