Owner charged in dog’s death row escape
Police say an Alameda couple concocted a scheme to free their pit bull, Max, from the Alameda Animal Shelter, which, because he’d been deemed a dangerous dog, was planning to euthanize him Wednesday.
Authorities arrested one of the suspects, Richard Cochran, 57. Cochran admitted to formulating a plan to steal the three-year-old dog from the shelter with Melissa Perry, 38, his girlfriend of 17 years, and two other people whose identities haven’t been confirmed, police said.
He denied playing any other role in stealing the dog, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
Perry, meanwhile, called the Chronicle on Thursday evening, saying Max was with her and that a friend was driving them across the country. “I’m almost to Kentucky,” she said.
Perry told the newspaper that, while neither she nor Cochran had anything to do with the break-in, she had told friends she wished someone would “break him out.”
“Max doesn’t deserve to be euthanized. Considering the circumstances, I think he deserves a chance.”
Police say the dog is dangerous. “If anyone comes into contact with the dog and this woman, I really want to stress that they should take caution,” said police Sgt. Jill Ottaviano. “This is a very dangerous animal. It is very protective of this woman.”
Max had bitten two people. While being examined at an animal hospital in Oakland, he bit a veterinary technician. The dog was ordered to be quarantined at his home in an Alameda motel after that, but during the quarantine he bit a friend of the couple.
The animal shelter was ready to euthanize Max on Tuesday, after a court order was issued. The court commissioner agreed that the dog would be kept alive one more day to allow Cochran and Perry to say goodbye.
When shelter staff arrived for work Wednesday morning they discovered someone had used bolt cutters to cut through a cyclone fence and break the lock on the kennel where Max had been staying.
(Photo: Alameda Police Department)
Posted by John Woestendiek May 14th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: alameda, animal control, animals, bites, broken out, california, courts, crime, dangerous, death row, dogs, escape, euthanasia, euthanized, freed, fugitive, max, melissa perry, news, ohmidog!, owners, pets, pit bull, pit bulls, pitbulls, police, richard cochran, shelter, sprung, stolen