Thor donations unaccounted for at Kewanee Animal Shelter

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KEWANEE, Illinois-- He's the little big shot in Kewanee with four legs, a few scars and the will to live; Thor, the black pup whose neck was slashed four times by a teenager.

Back in August, Thor had a parade throughout the city thanking the community for their donations.

Thousands of dollars poured in to the Thor Fund, specifically set up to cover all of Thor's medical bills. The rest was supposed to go back to the community.

"It was supposed to be used for spay and neuter of animals in the community for people that maybe couldn't afford it to have that service so we didn't continue the problem with Thor, animals having litters that aren't taken care of," says current Kewanee Animal Shelter board member Mary Bergren.

Fast forward ten months to now, the shelter that helped Thor is under new leadership. The people in charge and shelter members say the group who used to be in charge left no financial paper trail. They say there are barely any records of how much money came in to the Thor Fund and no records of how it was used.

"People have concerns right now," says Bergren.

News 8 asked former shelter president Lee Eisenbarth how much Thor money was donated.

"Let me think. I'm pretty sure it was over $15,000, but I'd have to check. I know being president I should have known, but she pretty much handled that," says Eisenbarth.

Eisenbarth is talking about Kellie Wallace, the former Kewanee Shelter manager. Wallace declined an interview.

"The best thing I could say is that it's in a separate account, and it's being used to help neglected animals and to help spay and neuter," says Eisenbarth.

"We just don't know if they're all being used for that purpose or if they were used to operate the shelter, self operating expenses," says Bergren.

Bergren isn't saying anything illegal was done. She's just saying without a paper trail, there's no way of knowing where the money went.

"We only have records for 2018, so it's hard to go back and look at the Thor Fund until we get those records," says Bergren.

Eisenbarth admits they didn't do everything right, but she says her heart was in the right place.

"We made mistakes, sure. But we loved those animals, and we tried everything we could to find homes," says Eisenbarth.

But the new leaders move forward with new rules on how to handle donations.

"We will make sure that money is taken care of properly. There will be a paper trail. They'll get a receipt. They'll be bank deposits, receipts for that," says Bergren.

The new leadership is making sure money coming in for future four-legged fighters is handled responsibly.

"We want to regain their confidence that we will use their money that's being donated appropriately."

The new leadership is preparing for an audit. They say after the audit is complete, they will have more answers as to how the Thor Fund was used.

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