The family in charge of the Colorado Humane Society stepped down on Tuesday amid accusations of charity fraud, deception, and gross mismanagement.
The accusations came from a lawsuit filed last week by the Colorado Attorney General, whose investigation was sparked by a series of reports by the CALL7 Investigators.
At a hearing in Arapahoe County Court on Tuesday morning, attorneys for Mary and Bob Warren said the couple had agreed to step down as Executive Director and Director of Development of the Colorado Humane Society for the benefit of the animals.
The Warrens were not in court, but through their attorneys the couple denied any wrongdoing and agreed to step aside as management in order to concentrate on defending themselves against the attorney general's lawsuit.
Current and former workers of the Colorado Humane Society were in court when the judge handed control of the charity over to Rick Block of the Waverton Group, who is now charged with trying to get the shelter on track financially as well as in compliance with state regulations.
Block told 7NEWS his priorities are to find the charity's assets and get word out to the community that the Colorado Humane Society is stable.
The Warrens, and Mary's daughter Stephenie Gardner, are accused of collecting nearly $3 million in donations, illegally.
They're also accused of misrepresenting the Colorado Humane Society has a "no-kill" shelter when euthanasia rates at times reached more than 25% in a month and a number of euthanized animals were thrown into a Dumpster instead of cremated as the former owners were told.
"We won round one. The animals finally had their day in court. It's not about us. It's not about the Warrens or Stephenie Gardner. It's about the animals and we set out to do what other people tried to do and for whatever reason weren't able to," said current Humane Society employee Susan Fredinburg.
Fredinburg was one of the current and former workers at the Colorado Humane Society whose accusations lead to the CALL7 Investigation and ultimately the inquiry by the state Attorney General.
Former employee Liesl Beckmann told 7NEWS, "I'm excited to see change and looking forward to getting new managment to really take care of the organization."
Kate Lindenbaum also worked at the shelter and was at Tuesday's hearing.
She said, "I'm just so thankful that Channel 7 took the allegations seriously and did an investigation and the attorney general's office took it seriously and did an investigation. Overall we got the outcome we were looking for and, I think, a lot of people were looking for -- for many years."
At the conclusion of Tuesday's hearing, former volunteer at the shelter Kitty Marini told 7NEWS, "It's about time."
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