VIDEO: Suspect in fatal Groves animal cruelty case told police she forgot about dog
Published 3:13 pm Thursday, September 1, 2022
GROVES — A 42-year-old Groves woman is facing felony animal cruelty charges in connection with the death of a puppy.
Michelle Bradford was arrested Thursday for cruelty to non-livestock animals, a third degree felony.
Groves Police Department Sergeant John Hudson said a child video recorded the puppy in a cage-style kennel in full sunlight on July 13.
Police were notified of the deceased dog left in the cage on a concrete driveway without any shade, food or water.
On that date the National Weather Service had issued a heat advisory with a heat index between 108 and 112 degrees, according to the probable cause affidavit for Bradford’s arrest.
An officer found the dog outside in the 3100 block of Taft Avenue and spoke with Bradford, who reportedly said her daughter left the dog at her home without her knowledge.
The puppy was brought to Dr. Blake Foskey, a veterinarian, for necropsy, and concluded the puppy died of a heat stroke with subsequent disseminated intravascular coagulation.
During the follow-up investigation, Bradford allegedly told police she was aware that food, the puppy and her grandson were dropped off at the home between 12:09 and 12:42 p.m.
Police also allege she told authorities that she went inside with her grandson and forgot the puppy outside until police arrived at 3:23 p.m.
Bradford reportedly said she did not admit this to the first officer out of fear at the time.
Groves Detectives completed the case file and submitted it to the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office for review.
The Jefferson County DA accepted the felony charge of cruelty to non-livestock animals, which is a 3rd degree felony.
A warrant was granted, and Judge Benjamin Collins Sr. issued a $25,000 bond.
Once the warrant was active, Groves officers located Bradford at a home in Port Arthur and were able to execute the warrant Thursday.
Should she post bond she must remain in Jefferson County pending the outcome of the case, Collins said.
Hudson said a third degree felony carries a sentence of 2 to 10 years and a fine of up to $10,000.