- Utah, USA -
The Stockton Police Department said in a news release that on Wednesday, September 8, it was reported that a Great White Pyrenees was running loose in the Raw Hide Subdivision.
Officers who were dispatched to the area learned that several neighbors had witnessed the dog running from the property belonging to KRISTIN RASMUSSEN, and that later the dog was put in the backyard of RASMUSSEN’s Stockton property.
Stockton is about seven miles south of Tooele, roughly a 45-minute drive from Salt Lake City.
Police noticed the furbaby was “underweight and seemed skittish around people.”
When officers made contact with RASMUSSEN, she “claimed she had never seen the dog and that someone just dropped it in her property.”
Police say RASMUSSEN told officers she had just returned from Missouri and had asked Stockton Police to impound the dog as a stray.
RASMUSSEN’s claim however, was soon proved false.
In fact, the following day, on September 9, witnesses contacted Stockton police to report that they had seen the dog in RASMUSSEN’s property and specified that from September 4, until September 8, the furbaby was locked in a kennel with no food, water, or shelter.
Furthermore, one of these witnesses made police aware of a Facebook post of September 4, by RASMUSSEN showing that she was requesting the dog from a man and promised a ‘good home’.
Police found the Facebook post in question and tracked down the man who confirmed to investigators that he indeed had spoken with RASMUSSEN via Facebook messenger.
The man told police the dog was happy and healthy in his care.
He also showed the police messages from RASMUSSEN telling him that she was back east and that an assistant would pick up the dog and take it to her property in Stockton.
As a result of the messages and eyewitness testimony, police were then able to obtain a warrant for RASMUSSEN’s arrest on September 10, and a search warrant for her phone which was served on September 14.
RASMUSSEN maintained the original version and repeated to officers that she was back east and that she had no knowledge of the dog.
When officers confronted her about the messages exchanged with the man on Facebook messenger, she said that her Facebook was locked out because she had been hacked and that she had no access to it.
At that point police performed a cursory search on her phone and found her Facebook account unlocked and the messages were in her ‘archived’ folder.
Police arrested RASMUSSEN on her warrant stemming from animal cruelty and other local animal violations for a bail amount of $2,750.
Additionally, RASMUSSEN had three other warrants for her arrest at the time, including a warrant from a previous Stockton case of theft and communications fraud for a bail amount of $1,000. The other two warrants were for driving on a suspended license out of South Salt Lake and Woods Cross.
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