ESTEVAN ANTONIO RODRIGUEZ and DANIELLE M. SANDERS charged with first-degree animal cruelty

- Washington, USA -

For this story, Voice For Us has reached out to Yelm Police Department and requested a copy of the police report which was kindly emailed to me.

On November 30, 2020, Yelm Police Department received a complaint about a dog who had been barking in unit C-204 in one of the buildings at Tustin Apartment Homes.

Officers responded to 10520 Creek Street Southeast to investigate.

According to the police report, a maintenance employee, Mr. Travis Galindo, explained that several residents had brought to his attention that the furbaby had been barking for the last ten days.

Mr. Galindo also explained that after noticing that a note remained untouched for many days, he opened the front door of the unit after there was no answer.

Mr. Galindo did not enter the unit, but he was overwhelmed by the foul odor and the trash stacked throughout the place.

Mr. Galindo also assumed that since the dog was barking but not charging at the door, the dog must have been in a crate.

At that point, animal control were called in for the wellbeing of the furbaby.

YPD Officer Rompa and animal control entered the unit.

Officer Rompa reported being “overwhelmed by the putrid stench filling the entire apartment. The entire apartment was filled with garbage everywhere. The apartment was filled with flies and other bugs, numerous fly strips were hung from the ceiling and all were completely full of dead flies.”

No one was inside the apartment.

Officers found the poor dog in a small metal crate and did not have food or water.

The report continues to say that “The floor of the crate was covered in dog feces, and much of it was growing fungus on it. The floor of the crate was also covered in the dog’s hair which appeared to be falling out due to his poor health as a result of being crated this long. Based on the condition of the crate it appeared the dog had been in the crated for longer than 10 days. The dog was stained with feces and urine as it had no other option than to lay in it due to the size of the crate (approximately 3 feet by 2 feet). “

The report states that the dog appeared to be a Blue Heeler, but due the condition he was in, it was difficult to estimate his age.

Reportedly, the poor soul was so thin that you could see most of his bones.

He was extremely malnourished.

Officer Rompa immediately gave the dog water and by the speed he drank it, it was clear he was very thirsty.

When Officer Rompa took the furbaby outside, he also feverishly drank from a puddle for quite some time.

The dog tried to go potty, but it was difficult as he was having trouble using his rear leg as they appeared weak, wobbly, and very thin, the report states.

Yelm animal control took custody of the dog and provided medical care.

In connection with this crime, 26-year-old ESTEVAN ANTONIO RODRIGUEZ and 25-year-old DANIELLE M. SANDERS, both of Yelm, were charged with first-degree animal cruelty.

On December 17, 2020, RODRIGUEZ contacted Officer Rompa and explained that he was living at the apartment by himself since he and SANDERS had broken up.

RODRIGUEZ further explained that since he was going to be away for a while, he left the dog in the apartment and asked his relatives to care for him until his return.

RODRIGUEZ claimed that he only learned that the dog was no longer in the apartment on December 4.

He assumed his relatives did not provide care, and the dog died.

He claimed someone must have entered the apartment and trashed it because when he left, the apartment was clean.

Now, RODRIGUEZ is requesting that the charges are dropped and wants the dog back!

I truly hope that animal control will strongly oppose this absurd request.

Yelm Police tell me that the dog has not been adopted as animals cannot be adopted until the case is completed, and that he is currently being fostered.

Police also tell me they were very happy to be able to save the dog!

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