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Manager of Gwinnett animal shelter resigns

Curt Harrell, the manager of the Gwinnett County animal shelter, resigned this week, officials confirmed. 

The reasoning behind Harrell’s resignation was not immediately clear.

County officials have credited Harrell, who was hired to lead the shelter in March 2016, with helping the shelter’s euthanization numbers continue their march toward all-time lows.  Overall euthanizations went from 3,238 in 2012 to 514 in 2016.

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But Harrell, a former police officer and teacher, was also found guilty in March of criminal contempt of court,  a charge tied to the euthanization of a court-protected dog. Harrell, who has said he was following legal advice when the dog was killed, later appealed the conviction to the Georgia Court of Appeals.

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Online records suggest that appeal is still pending.

Harrell was also one subject of a months-long internal affairs investigation into operations at the facility (which was under control of the Gwinnett County Police Department until being moved under the umbrella of the Department of Community Services earlier this year).

Harrell was ultimately cleared of any wrongdoing.

Gwinnett County spokesman Joe Sorenson said Harrell resigned on Monday but did not immediately provide further information.

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