Steven Clay Romero and his sister were indicted late Monday in connection with the dragging death of Buddy, a stolen German shepherd mix who was pulled by a rope attached to a pick-up truck for miles at Colorado National Monument.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the National Park Service announced the indictments today against 37-year-old Romero, of Grand Junction, and his sister, 32-year-old Melissa Marie Lockhart of Fruita, according to the Denver Post.
Romero is already in federal custody and an arrest warrant was issued for Lockhart.
The federal indictment alleges Romero knowingly tortured and needlessly mutilated and killed the dog by dragging it behind a vehicle for three miles at the Colorado National Monument sometime between Dec. 29 and 30.
The indictment says Lockhart knew about the crime between Dec. 30 and 31, but concealed it by making false statements to law enforcement, and failed to report it.
Romero faces one count of aggravated animal cruelty, punishable, if convicted, by up to three years in federal prison and up to a $100,000 fine. Lockhart is additionally charged with stealing Buddy and another dog, and faces up to three years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine, if convicted.
The case is in federal court because the crime is alleged to have occurred in a national park.
(For our previous posts on Buddy, click here.)
Posted by John Woestendiek January 26th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animals, buddy, colorado, colorado national monument, cruelty to animals, death, dog, dogs, drag, dragged, dragging, federal, german shepherd, indicted, justice for buddy, melissa lockhart, petition, pets, pick-up truck, rope, steven clay romero, steven romero, stolen, torture, u.s. attorney, warrant
Shylo, a 5-year-old husky, spent more than an hour bobbing in the icy waters of the Rock River in Illinois before firefighters tossed him a rope.
Shylo grabbed the rope in his mouth and held on, getting tugged partly to shore before a firefighter slid across the ice to pull him the rest of the way out.
Even then, back on land and in the arms of his rescuers, he kept the rope gripped in his mouth, not releasing it until after he was back home with his owner, the Rockford Register Star reported.
This week the dog’s owner Peggy Yarber, brought Shylo to the Harlem-Roscoe Fire Department to thank the firefighters who hauled him out of the river.
“This dog is my whole life,” Yarber said. “I can’t thank you enough. I really can’t. If it weren’t for you, he wouldn’t be here.”
Yarber was visiting a friend when Shylo wandered off. He was found about a mile away, having fallen through the ice in the river. A nearby homeowner called authorities.
A Winnebago County animal control officer, tossed Shylo the rope that he latched onto to amid the ice chunks to help keep his head above water. As he neared shore, firefighter Christi Wilson crawled across the ice to grab him and slide him to shore.
On Tuesday, Yarber took her dog with her to thank the firefighters. Wilson greeted the dog with a bag of treats.
“Just him being here is enough thanks for me,” she said.
(Photo: Scott Morgan/Rockford Register Star)
Posted by John Woestendiek January 21st, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, christi wilson, dog, dogs, firefighters, grip, huskie, ice, icy, lifeline, mouth, owner, peggy yarber, pets, rescue, river, rock river, rope, shylo, thanks, winnebago county
A truly ugly act took place this morning in a truly beautiful place: A dog was dragged two miles to his death at the Colorado National Monument near Grand Junction.
The dog – a German shepherd, or shepherd-blue heeler mix — was found with a silver and blue rope around its neck by the chief of maintenance at the monument about 4:30 a.m., according to a park press release.
“This was an incredible act of cruelty done to a defenseless animal,” Joan Anzelmo, superintendent of the monument told The Denver Post. “It is a sickening, sickening type of crime. We are leaving no stone unturned.”
In terms of despicability, we’d have to rank it up there with the dog thrown off a bridge in Lithuania — and it’s a reminder, too, that we in America, despite all the do-gooding when it comes to dogs, have a long way to go as well when it comes to protecting animals from the depraved individuals among us.
Anzelmo said tracks left in the snow clearly show the dog initially walked behind the car, then ran and then was dragged when it couldn’t keep up with the vehicle. Once dead, it was untied from the vehicle and dumped.
She said the dog was pulled up one of the steepest hills at the monument, through two inches of snow and multiple switchbacks, and either ran or was dragged as the car climbed 1,000 feet in elevation.
The animal was neutered and showed no signs of previous abuse, she said. A veterinary pathologist from Colorado State University will perform a necropsy on the dog.
Anzelmo said rewards will be offered to apprehend the persons responsible, and that some tips have already come in over a tip line established as part of the investigation: 970-712-2798. Callers may remain anonymous.
“The employees of Colorado National Monument are sickened by this heinous act and are determined to find the person who committed this cruel crime,” the park press release said.
(For subsequent posts and all of our coverage of Buddy, click here.)
(Photos: National Park Service)
Posted by John Woestendiek December 31st, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abuse, animal cruelty, car, colorado national monument, crime, dog, dragged, dragging, extreme, grand junction, graphic, heeler, hills, joan anzelmo, monument, necropsy, pulled, rope, shepherd, superintendent, switchbacks, tied, tracks, two miles, warning