Walker Police arrest three in 2 separate cases of animal cruelty

Puppies found in ice chest
Puppies found in ice chest

WALKER, LA (WAFB) - According to Walker Police, three people have been arrested for two different cases of animal cruelty.

The first case, Harmoni Pelletier, 36, of Denham Springs, reported finding 10 puppies abandoned along Ball Park Road in Walker. During the investigation, police arrested Pelletier for animal cruelty after they determined she is the one who placed the puppies in an ice chest and left it on Ball Park Road.

Police say Pelletier admitted to the act and told police she brought the puppies so that Walker Animal Control would accept them. Walker Animal Control is prohibited from accepting animals found outside the city limits.

Pelletier was charged with one count of animally cruelty.

The second case is where two men, now identified as Victor Romero, 31, of Satsuma and his father Oscar Romero, 53, of Satsuma took four kittens to the Walker Animal Shelter. Victor claimed to have found the kittens on South Satsuma Road. According to police, Victor became angry when he learned the Animal Shelter could not accept the kittens because they were found outside of the city limits. Police say Victor indicated that he "would solve the problem another way."

"Animal Control officials reported that a blue Dodge pickup truck occupied by the two men rapidly accelerated out of the Shelter parking lot," reported Captain John Sharp, Walker Police Public Information Officer. "Upon reaching Ballpark Road, the truck stopped and the kittens were thrown from the passenger side window onto the roadway. The two men then fled the area at a high rate of speed."

The kittens were gathered up and were taken to the animal shelter to be examined. They were not injured.

"We were pleased to learn that as the subjects were leaving the Shelter, the Animal Control Director photographed the rear of the truck with her cell phone," Captain Sharp stated. "Thanks to the quick thinking of the Director, the photograph was available for use in our investigation. Without the photo to use as a starting point, it would have been very difficult to determine the identity of the suspects."

Police traced the pickup to the home of Victor and Oscar Romero. Victor confessed to throwing the kittens out of the window of the truck that his father was driving. Nine days after throwing the kittens out of the truck window, Victor was arrested and charged with four counts of animal cruelty.

Oscar Romero denied having any part of the situation during the initial investigation. On July 23, 2013, police charged Oscar with four counts of being a principal to cruelty to animals. When he was told about the charges against him he "used poor judgment," according to police, and there was a "brief, unsuccessful struggle."

"Romero was arrested, taken into custody and booked into the Livingston Parish Detention Center on the animal cruelty charges, as well as careless operation, driving under suspension and resisting arrest," said Captain Sharp. Romero subsequently posted a $3,530 bond and was released from jail.

If found guilty of animal cruelty charges, each Romero man could be fined up to $500.00 and sentenced up to 60 days in jail on each count. Oscar Romero faces additional penalties in connection with the charges of resisting arrest, driving under suspension and careless operation.

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