CHESAPEAKE, Va. - Police say a local woman is accused of running an illegal animal boarding business and they are investigating how one dog died in her care.
Police say Kymberlin Pope was charged with 12 misdemeanors back on December 22 for the business.
On December 27, Pope brought two dogs into animal control. One of the dogs was deceased.
On December 28, officers served a search warrant on her home and seized five dogs.
According to online court records, Pope is now facing 20 misdemeanors, including inadequate care for several dogs, failure to provide adequate space and no animal license.
Officials are currently doing an autopsy of the dog to determine its cause of death.
Lynn Winney, who says she is the owner of the dog who died, Valkyrie, says Pope originally offered to keep the dog while she was in the hospital back in September.
There was a disagreement over who owned the dog. Winney admits that originally, she was going to let Pope adopt Valkyrie.
As she healed, she changed her mind and tried to get Valkyrie back, but she says Pope wouldn't give her up.
Winney says the next time she saw her dog, it was at the Animal Control office, deceased.
"I saw her ears and her face, it just broke my heart, no one should see their loved one look like that," she says. "She was my everything, to do this to someone is the cruelest thing that has ever happened to me on my life."
News 3 spoke with Pope about the accusations. She denied an on-camera interview.
In a statement she said, "I had proper licensing and I believe the results of the necropsy will exonerate me."
Depending on the cause of death, Pope could face more charges, according to police.
The investigation is on-going.
Pope has a hearing in Chesapeake General District Court on Thursday for seven of her misdemeanor charges.
For that reason, Pope said she did not want to comment further about the case.