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Friday, Sep 9, 2011

County: Porter

Charges: Misdemeanor
Disposition: Alleged

Alleged: Patricia Ann Scott

The woman arrested Friday for keeping more than 50 animals in her Portage trailer had two previous convictions for animal cruelty.

Patricia A. Scott, 63, was convicted in 2006 of animal cruelty in a Valparaiso case involving 24 dogs and three cats.

The case came to light when a fire broke out Jan. 3, 2005, at Scott's home on Dumas Street. The day after the fire, an animal control officer went to the home and found numerous dogs in a vehicle and many more inside the house.

About a week later, Porter County police arrested Scott outside the Porter County Animal Shelter on Ind. 2, south of U.S. 30. Police said they discovered Scott about 1:40 a.m. outside the building holding a flashlight and hammer. She told police she had gone to the shelter during regular business hours to get her animals back.

When she was told she could not get them back, she told police she returned to see them, and "if I could get up enough nerve, I would get them out of the shelter."

She was found guilty of trespassing and animal cruelty in separate trials. She was sentenced to 20 days in jail.

Scott also had a 1990 conviction for cruelty to animals.

On Friday, Scott was arrested on charges of cruelty to animals, and also resisting law enforcement and disorderly conduct when police came to her home on a complaint she was keeping animals caged in her home without food or water.

Most of animals taken from Scott's home were taken to the Hobart Humane Society.

Humane Society Director Brenda Slavik said the dogs were covered with feces. An Afghan had some type of skin condition and a Rottweiler-shepherd mix had some type of mange.

"But I've seen worse," she said.

On entering the residence, police said - "which smelled strongly of animal urine and feces emitting from the back room of the trailer" - the officer found the following:

•14 cats "in small plastic animal carriers with up to four cats in each small carrier designed for only one small animal."

•Two large dogs "removed from kennels without food or water."

•One guinea pig "in a cage without food or water."

•Three rabbits, each in its own cage, the bottom of which "was covered in urine and fecal matter."

•Nine snakes in individual tanks, "some without lids."

•12 rats in two glass tanks "with no food."

•Eight mice in one glass container.

"Upon initially entering the back room I saw it was full of caged animals and these cages were stacked on top of each other from wall to wall and floor to ceiling allowing very little room to walk or stand," the investigating officer stated in his report. "After seeing the living conditions the animals had been forced into, Ms. Scott was . . . charged with animal cruelty."
About 14 cats were saved -- five or six have hair loss, all were covered in urine, and all are being treated with flea medication. She said males and females were kept in the same cages and none of the felines was spayed or neutered. She doesn't know if any of the females are pregnant. The 14 cats "in small plastic animal carriers with up to four cats in each small carrier designed for only one small animal."

Three French Lop rabbits taken from the home have hair missing and will need to be examined by a vet, Slavik said.

She said the sudden influx of about 20 animals has caused significant crowding at the Humane Society, and that 110 animals at the facility is "pushing it." There are currently about 140 now with the animals from Scott's home.

Slavik said the Humane Society must hold the animals for 10 days and then will begin to find homes for them.

Several snakes, rats and mice were taken to a local pet store.


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