MEDIA RELEASE: Jail for Rescue of Horrors Operator

MEDIA RELEASE: Jail for Rescue of Horrors Operator

BILOXI, Miss. (August 11, 2023)In Defense of Animals, the international animal protection organization operating Hope Animal Sanctuary and Justice for Animals Campaign in Mississippi, and local animal activists have welcomed the sentencing of Jessica Collins, who was charged with the deaths of 30 dogs found dead and bagged on her property, along with a federally protected buzzard.


In February 2022, a local animal advocate was alerted to multiple dead dogs at a property in Saucier where Collins was said to be operating Deep South Animal Rescue and contacted Harrison County Animal Control to report what she had witnessed.

Video shows bodies of dogs all over, with many in trash bags or burned, and in varying states of decomposition. Just one dog was alive, an emaciated labrador who had been locked in a shed without ventilation, food, or water, along with a deceased buzzard.

A warrant was issued to rescue the dog and begin disposal of 30 deceased canine remains.

An additional 14 dogs on a property in Pass Christian were also surrendered by Collins. 

Collins was arrested in March 2022, and charged with one felony count of animal cruelty and 30 misdemeanor counts of simple animal cruelty. 

Collins operated Deep South Animal Rescue under the name Jessica Ann Gallaspy. She was charged with 30 misdemeanor counts for cruelty to a dog under MS § 97-41-16 (2) a. and bonded out of the Harrison County Adult Detention Center. Maliciously injuring dogs or cats is now a first-offense felony for each dog or cat killed with malice, MS § 97-41-16 (2) b.  

Over 21,000 people signed In Defense of Animalsletter urging Harrison County Prosecutor Herman Cox to amend the charges to felonies before Collins’ court appearance. 

In 2020, the Mississippi Dog and Cat Pet Protection Law of 2011 was updated to make animal cruelty a first-offense felony and allows a charge of cruelty for every animal harmed.

Collins should have rightfully been charged with the felonies. Three of the dogs were shot, and the prosecution failed to have necropsies performed on the other pitiful dogs found dead on her property. 

On August 11, a plea deal was reached. Collins was sentenced to 60 months incarceration, with six months to be served beginning on August 25. She will serve the remaining 54 months if she violates any term of her sentencing.

She is not to have animals for 15 years, and may not work with or around them for five years. She will have to pay $4,500 in restitution and court costs, submit to mandatory psychiatric evaluation and treatment at her own cost. Collins will be on probation for two years.

Doll Stanley, In Defense of Animals’ Justice for Animals Senior Campaigner commented, “Volunteers said that they were shocked to hear Collins yelling at the dogs that she’d kill them, and claimed the dead dogs were killed by a bobcat. Collins is devoid of empathy for the massive suffering she caused which cannot be erased. Mississippi animal advocates have worked tirelessly to update the law to hold abusers like this accountable. It’s bad enough that this woman was posing as a rescuer, but to let her get away with misdemeanor charges for the horror she inflicted upon these dogs is inexcusable.”

Local animal advocate Missy Dubuisson said, “Let's not forget the huge black dog that was dead that she was driving around with who knows how long in her Suburban. They were already in a bag which was so heavy my husband could hardly carry it.”



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Images & Video: ​​

Contact: Doll Stanley,, (662) 809-4483


In Defense of Animals’ Justice for Animals Campaign has worked actively with law enforcement, court officials, and citizens of Mississippi for the prevention and prosecution of animal cruelty under existing statutes and ordinances and for the passage of laws that civilized societies should afford their most vulnerable creatures for 30 years.

Hope Animal Sanctuary was established in Carroll County by In Defense of Animals in 1993. Each year, it rescues and rehabilitates around 500 of the Deep South’s most abused animals.

In Defense of Animals is an international animal protection organization based in California with over 250,000 supporters and a 40-year history of fighting for animals, their advocates, and the environment through education and campaigns, as well as hands-on rescue facilities in India, South Korea, and rural Mississippi.


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