The Blotter, Animal Edition: Woman Arrested for Allegedly Starving Dog to Death
Fugitive Pet Owner: A woman authorities believe is guilty of starving her dog to death has been arrested. The Washington Humane Society says that on Jan. 14 of last year, Humane Law Enforcement (HLE) found Shaketa Richardson's 4-month-old puppy, Empress, dead on a back porch in the 4000 block of Kansas Avenue NW. An investigation allegedly revealed Richardson, 35, had starved the animal over several weeks, but by the time an arrest warrant was issued she had skipped town; officials believe she was somewhere in Virginia. On Dec. 30, D.C. Metropolitan Police found her back at the Kansas Avenue location after being called there for a domestic disturbance Richardson was allegedly involved in. They arrested her when they discovered her outstanding warrant.
According to a D.C. Superior Court docket, Richardson has been released temporarily under the condition she not "own, purchase or assume responsibility for the care of an animal." Richardson's lawyer, John A. Briley Jr., couldn't be reached for comment. If convicted of animal cruelty, Richardson—who has entered a not guilty plea—faces up to 180 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $250.
Not a Doghouse: There are certain places you just can't keep your dog. One of them: inside the trunk of a car. That's where an HLE officer found a 10-month-old Shepherd mix on Dec. 30. Responding to a complaint, the animal cop found the dog barking inside the trunk of a red Geo Metro in a parking lot in the 3900 block of Chesapeake Street NW. The officer popped the trunk and impounded the dog. A notice was left for the owner.
Also Not a Doghouse: Another place not suitable for dogs? A cold utility room with no food or water. An HLE officer arrived at a location in the 100 block of Kenilworth Avenue NE on Jan. 5 to find a pit bull living in those conditions. The dog was impounded.
Health Care: On Jan. 3, the Humane Society checked up on a pit bull in the 500 block of 51st Street NE that had been hit by a car the previous night and found its owner hadn't taken it to the vet. The 6-month-old black-and-white male was suffering from a swollen hind leg. The owner, who didn't have the money for a vet, surrendered the dog and the Humane Society got him treatment.
Source: Washington Humane Society
Photograph of Richardson provided by the Washington Humane Society.