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Tag: surveillance

Man runs over estranged wife’s Chihuahua

A California casino manager was charged with animal cruelty after police reviewed a surveillance video they say shows him purposefully running over his estranged wife’s Chihuahua with his car.

Michael David Parker, 45, was arrested Jan. 3, a day after police found the remains of a dog inside a bag in an alley in Hawthorne.

The police investigation led to the surveillance tapes, which authorities say show Parker opening the trunk of his car, in which the dog was apparently being held, getting back in his car and running the dog over.

cowcowKTLA in Los Angeles, which aired the less gruesome portions of the video this week, reported that Parker’s estranged wife, Olga, believes her husband killed “Cow Cow” in retaliation for not giving him money from their retirement fund.

“If someone would do that to a dog… what would he do to my kids?” she told KTLA.

The couple’s divorce settlement is reportedly still pending, and they have three children, aged 6, 12 and 15.

According to the Daily Breeze, Parker is the facilities director of the Hustler Casino in Gardena. He posted $20,000 bail and faces a March 25 arraignment. Parker told detectives it was an accident, and he didn’t see the dog.

parkerPolice say the video indicates otherwise. “You can see him swerving toward the dog,” Hawthorne police Lt. Scott Swain said. “Parker backs his vehicle up, and then appears to accelerate rapidly, steering directly toward the dog. Cow Cow is run completely over.”

The couple’s two dogs, Cow Cow and Lucky, lived in their vacant house in San Pedro, and Olga Parker stopped by every day to feed them. Lucky is missing, she says.

Movie animator charged with beating dog

 A 40-year-old DreamWorks animator – one who worked on animal-themed children’s movies such as “Kung Fu Panda” and “Madagascar 2″ —  has been arrested on an animal cruelty charge after a surveillance camera videotaped him beating a neighbor’s muzzled dog with a hammer.

Young Song pleaded not guilty in court yesterday and faces a preliminary hearing next month. He allegedly climbed a fence into a neighbor’s yard in Pasadena. Surveillance camera video shows the 16-month-old dog being beaten but does not reveal what Song did with the dog.

Authorities say the dog is missing and presumed dead.

Song was being held on $40,500 bail, according to authorities, according to the Los Angeles Times.

“When our officers first viewed the videotape, one of our officers had tears in his eyes. He’d never seen anything like this before,” said Steve McNall, who heads the Pasadena Humane Society and Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. “In my 31 years at this animal shelter I’ve never seen anything like this.”

McNall’s agency, which is licensed to investigate crimes involving animals, is conducting the probe. It made the arrest in conjunction with Pasadena police.

According to authorities, the suspect shot the dog with a pellet gun, then returned with a hammer and began chasing and striking the animal.

The Times reported that Young works as a “surfacer,” an artisan who creates the look and surface qualities for animated characters, props and environments. Young’s credits on animal-themed films also include “Shark Tale” and “Bee Movie.”

The motive for the attack is not clear. “It might have originated as a barking issue, a noise issue, and then escalated into something else,” McNall said.

If convicted, Song could face more than four years in prison, the district attorney’s office said.

Prosecutor laughs during Tiara Davis hearing

sparkyThe assistant district attorney prosecuting the case against Tiara Davis, accused of beating her Pomeranian on the elevator at a New York City housing project, broke into laughter in the courtroom yesterday.

While reading Davis’ statement about how she beat the dog, Assistant District Attorney Steven Constantiner began chuckling, the New York Daily News reported.

“He was laughing and had to turn away because he couldn’t control the laughter,” said, Stacy Schneider, a Legal Aid lawyer representing Davis. “I didn’t see any humor in the statement.”

Davis, 31, is charged with beating a 9-pound Pomeranian named Sparky into unconsciousness in an elevator at the Grant Houses in Manhattan. Police quoted her as saying: “It wasn’t like I was killing him or anything like that. I mean I wasn’t gonna really hurt him.”

Constantiner started laughing when he was reading part of Davis’ statement that described the dog relieving itself in the elevator.

“The assistant district attorney laughed briefly and unexpectedly while reading to the court the vulgarities the defendant used in her statement to police,” acknowledged Erin Duggan, a spokesperson for the district attorney’s office. Constantiner declined comment.

Davis, a vocational counselor, pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor animal-cruelty charges. Her lawyer denied she  made the statements to police. Davis, who has since surrendered Sparky, was caught on video beating the 4-year-old dog and was arrested by the ASPCA. She faces up to a year in jail.

Her arrest came just after another resident of the Grant Houses, Chris Grant, was charged with animal cruelty in connection with beating a dog — an incident police say was caught on the elevator surveillance cameras earlier.

PETA urges prison time in elevator cases

PETA is asking the New York  District Attorney’s office to “vigorously prosecute” Chris Grant and Tiara Davis — two residents of a city housing project that police say were caught on elevator surveillance videos abusing dogs.

“The viciousness shown in the abuse of these animals must not go unpunished,” said PETA Director Martin Mersereau. “New York residents have reason to be concerned. According to leading mental health professionals and law enforcement agencies, perpetrators of violent acts against animals are often repeat offenders who pose a serious threat to all animals, including humans.”

Grant and Davis face charges of cruelty to animals stemming from separate incidents in which they were allegedly each caught on surveillance video repeatedly kicking and violently yanking their small dogs at the Grant Housing Development in Upper Manhattan.

Grant is accused of abusing Chuvi-Duvi, a 12-pound Pomeranian-Chihuahua mix belonging to his girlfriend; Davis is charged with jerking and beating Sparky, her 9-pound Pomeranian, until it lost consciousness.

PETA is asking that the defendants, if convicted, be sentenced to periods of incarceration, prohibited from owning or harboring animals, and ordered to undergo thorough psychological evaluations followed by mandatory counseling.

More dog abuse in housing project elevator

A New York City woman has been charged after police say she was caught on video kicking and jerking her Pomeranian on an elevator in the same housing project where surveillance cameras captured a dog being beaten earlier this month.

Tiara Davis was charged with torturing and injuring an animal Monday. The incident was recorded by video cameras in the elevators of the Grant Houses Sunday morning. Police released the videos Tuesday.

The video shows Sparky, her 4-year-old Pomeranian, being beaten and jerked by its leash until unconscious.

Davis, 31, said she lost her temper when the dog relieved himself before getting outside.

“I kept telling him, ‘Sparky! Wait! Wait!’ ” Davis, a vocational counselor for ex-offenders, told the New York Daily News. “I became a little frustrated,” she added. “It was never my intention to hurt him.”

Sparky is recovering at the ASPCA hospital.

Elevator surveillance nabs dog abuser

 

New York City police investigating the fatal stabbing of a nine-year-old came across an unrelated crime — a small dog being repeatedly kicked in an elevator at the Grant Houses.

The assault showed up on surveillance cameras being monitored by police, leading them to arrest Chris Grant, the Manhattan man seen in the video.

Grant, 21, is seen in the footage dragging a friend’s 12-pound Pomeranian-Chihuahua mix, named Chuvi-Duvi, into the Grant Houses elevator. He kicks the dog, pets it, then kicks it again.

On his way back up the elevator, after a trip to a nearby deli, the same scene plays out again.

Police say Chuvi-Duvi didn’t suffer any broken bones in last Saturday’s attack and is recovering at Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital.

Officers from the police department’s Viper unit watched the attack from a remote location and arrested Grant two days later.

“I’m not trusting nobody with my dog,” said the pup’s owner, Melvin Rodriguez, 22, who picked the pooch up from the ASPCA.

The squad started tracking down Grant just an hour after they helped make an arrest in the fatal stabbing of 9-year-old Anthony Maldonado in the same Morningside Heights complex.

The Viper squad is responsible for monitoring surveillance cameras in city housing projects.

Arrest made in Colorado dog dragging case

romero“I don’t get it,”  Steven Clay Romero said when ordered held without bond  yesterday on charges of killing a dog by dragging it behind a pickup truck for two miles at  the Colorado National Monument.

Here’s hoping, if convicted, he does get it — and all else he might deserve.

Romero, 37, of Fruita, Colo., is scheduled for a detention hearing and arraignment Monday afternoon.

Upon Romero’s expression of bewilderment, Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle Heldmyer rose from her seat at the bail hearing, walked toward Romero and tossed a copy of the charges on the table in front of him, according to the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel.

Romero, who told U.S. Magistrate Judge Laird Milburn that he is a truck driver, expressed concern about sitting in jail over the weekend.

“So, in other words I’ll be sitting in jail and probably lose my job, too?” Romero asked Milburn.

“Yes,” the judge answered.

According to an arrest affidavit, after the dogs dragged body was found, a review of video surveillance at a park entrance showed a double-cab pickup entering the park early Wednesday with a dog and exiting 12 minutes later without one.

The affidavit said the dog, a shepherd-blue heeler mix named Buddy, had been stolen in Delta by an associate of Romero’s and taken to a home in Fruita where Romero was staying.

A resident of Delta recognized the dog from a photo of his body online and contacted authorities. A witness to the dog’s theft provided officials with a license plate number, which led them to a home in Fruita where Romero was staying. National Park Service rangers went to the Fruita home and found paw prints in the snow in the front yard and rope similar to that used to tie the dog to the truck.

The rangers interviewed Romero’s sister, who told them Romero said he was going to kill the dog. “She stated he left with the dog late last night and returned home a half hour later without it,” the affidavit said. The affidavit makes no mention of a motive for killing the dog.

A news release from monument officials said Romero was arrested Thursday morning at the Mesa County Justice Center after he appeared for an unrelated criminal case. He faces a maximum three years in prison, a fine up to $100,000 and a year of mandatory parole if convicted on a federal charge of felony cruelty to animals.

Romero was arrested six times in the past seven years by police in Montrose and Grand Junction on a variety of charges, including weapons offenses, traffic violations and drug distribution, according to court records.

(For subsequent posts and all of our coverage of Buddy, click here.)

Shelter conditions lead to firing in Memphis

memphisdogThis photo helped authorities in Shelby County, Tennessee get the search warrant that was used in a predawn raid that led to the temporary closure of the Memphis Animal Shelter two weeks ago.

The raid followed allegations of mismanagement, mistreatment of animals and improper euthanizations.

The mayor of Memphis, A C  Wharton, fired Animal Services Director Ernest Alexander Friday — a day after residents held a candlelight vigil at the facility.

“I am not an expert on (animal shelters), but I tell you what, I can walk in here and tell you whether it is clean or dirty,” Wharton said Friday during a news conference at the shelter. “I can tell you the difference between a pet that has been fed and cared for and loved and not loved.”

Wharton’s decision to fire Alexander came after shelter employees improperly euthanized a dog and preliminary results of a city investigation showed the facility had been mismanaged, the Memphis Commercial Appeal reported.

In addition to Alexander’s termination, three other shelter employees remain suspended with pay until the city investigation is complete.

Last week, Wharton established a committee to review the shelter’s operations and installed surveillance cameras that the public can access online. Members of the committee will monitor the shelter daily.

Public pressure for Wharton to take action at the shelter — long criticized by animal rights activists — has been building since Shelby County sheriff’s deputies raided the facility last week.

The puppy in the photo was admitted to the Memphis Animal Shelter Aug. 18, and died Sept. 4.  A necropsy showed the dog hadn’t eaten in at least 72 hours.

Stomped dog video leads to investigation

Security-camera footage that appears to show a man kicking and jumping on a puppy’s crate has landed on YouTube, prompting an investigation by the Massachusetts SPCA and threats of a boycott of the liquor store in which the incident apparently occured.

The Boston Globe reports the stomping of a beagle appears to have taken place in Blanchard’s Liquors, a popular store in Allston.

The one-minute clip was posted to YouTube Thursday last week. The incident, according to a recording stamp on the security camera footage, took place Feb. 6.

The video shows a man stride past the register of a liquor store, kick a crate containing a small dog, then jump on the crate, partially crushing it, before walking away. A person in a baseball cap then goes to check on the puppy, before a younger man walks into the frame, grabs a leash from the counter, and takes the dog away.

“It’s a horrible thing,” said Christine Moore, a 25-year-old former Allston resident and Blanchard’s customer who called for a boycott on Craigslist and her Facebook page.

A YouTube member named “ericword” posted the original clip. Reached by the Globe through YouTube e-mail, ericword identified himself in a phone interview as a 20-year-old Blanchard’s worker.

Giving his name only as Eric, he said he was suspended from his job for posting the clip. A Blanchard’s manager declined to comment to the newspaper.

The MSPCA’s law enforcement division, which has police power to bring felony charges, is investigating the matter, said Brian Adams, a spokesman.

“To the best of our knowledge, the dog in the video is OK,,” said Adams, encouraging those with information about the case to call the MSPCA at 800-628-5808.

Shoplifting dog trotted 6 miles for heist

Remember the shoplifting dog — that suspected Siberian Husky who trotted into a grocery store in Murray, Utah back before Christmas, grabbed a rawhide bone and made a clean getaway, except for being captured on the security cameras?

She’s now been identified, after being returned to the scene of the crime by her owners, who live six miles from the store.

Yes, the thieving pooch apparently traveled six miles each way to snag the bone. (Now wouldn’t that make a great advertisement for whatever company made it?)

After seeing the video, the Stirling family of Murray suspected their dog — an 11-year-old Husky named Akira — was the culprit, and drove her down to the store so that she could be positively identified.

She seemed eager to go back, the family noted.

“Yeah there’s no question. That looks exactly like the dog,” store manager Roger Adamson said. Store employees agreed, according to NBC.

When they turned her loose, she followed her nose, straight to the dog treat section.

John Stirling said he didn’t understand his dog’s incredible journey. “We’re definitely feeding her, she has boxes of treats in the cupboards.”

On the return trip to the store, the Stirlings paid for Akira’s new bone, and the one she took back in December.

Charges? None were filed, but Akira may have received a jolt when she left home, and when she returned. The Stirling’s fenceline is supposed to give her collar a electrical jolt if she tries to pass over.

Apparently, she outsmarted that device, too.


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