On November 12, 2021 Bienville Parish sheriff’s deputies executed a search warrant at a residence on Lela Street in Bienville after citizens’ complaints and an investigation by BPSO concerning a number of dogs which were found to be in declining health. One dog carcass had previously been located in the yard of the home. A previous complainant had related that there were 8 living and 5 dead dogs inside the residence.
On November 7, 2021 Sgt. Poda located 11 living dogs running loose and also observed 4 dogs inside the residence. The following day deputies returned the residence and provided water to the dogs that were outside.
On November 9, 2021 BPSO Communications Deputy Jean Cowan contacted the Louisiana Humane Society and was successful in coordinating resources to provide food as well as veterinary support for the animals. Dr. Kasey Johnson of the Jonesboro Animal Clinic was retained to assist in the removal and care of the animals on November 12, 2021. Prior to that time deputies fed and watered the dogs that were outside the residence.
Upon execution of the search warrant deputes located 5 dogs inside the residence, 2 dogs in a locked shed and 7 dogs in the yard. Deputies were overwhelmed with the smell of dog urine and feces but located no food or water. All the dogs were removed by Dr. Johnson and her assistants and were transported to the veterinary clinic for vet care and possible relocation of the animals.
Deputies located documents of several people who had resided at the home prior to the investigation. Arrest warrants had been previously obtained for Mary Hodges, age 65 of Lela St., Bienville and one other resident for aggravated cruelty to animals concerning the investigation.
Ms. Hodges was arrested at the Lela St. address on November 10, 2021 and was booked into the Bienville Parish Jail and later transferred to the Webster Parish Women’s Facility. More arrests are forthcoming.
A special thank you goes out to Dy. Cowan for her efforts to obtain assistance for the animals, as well as Capt. Crawford, Sgt. Poda, Cpl. Lawson, Deputy Bowman and Deputy Madden who went above and beyond in their efforts to ensure the animals received humane treatment. Kudos to Capt. Darrell Mills and his investigators namely Sgt. Skapura, Sgt. Allen and Sgt. Jones who assisted in the search warrant and provided invaluable assistance in the securing of the animals for transport. Last but not least thanks to the Louisiana Humane Society and Dr. Johnson and her assistants from the Jonesboro Animal Clinic for their expertise and assistance.
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