Woman Caught Dumping Puppies in Dumpster is Jailed for a Year
Sentenced to 365 days in prison after pleading guilty to 14 counts of animal cruelty
A California woman, who was caught dumping three-day-old puppies in a dumpster, has been jailed for a year on multiple animal cruelty charges.
54-year-old Deborah Sue Culwell of Coachella, CA pleaded guilty to 14 counts of animal cruelty and was sentenced to 365 days in prison.
Culwell was sent to jail on Wednesday afternoon for seven counts of felony animal cruelty counts and misdemeanor animal abandonment.
The seven dogs dumped in a recycling bin outside a Napa Auto Parts, with Culwell being caught by a security camera which filmed her throwing a bag full of the newborn pups into the dumpster like they were trash.
The Desert Sun reports that Culwell was sentenced to 365 days in county jail, but 90 of those days will be done through a work release.
After, she will be prohibited from possessing animals and will be on probation for seven years, according to the Daily Mail.
Riverside County Superior Judge Harold Hopp agreed to the terms of her plea and called the case "pretty severe."
Culwell was arrested on April 22 by authorities after surveillance footage from Napa Auto Parts revealed she was the woman who threw seven young puppies into a recycling bin four days earlier.
One of the puppies died due to her negligence.
The footage shows Culwell drove a white Jeep to the scene with the puppies inside a plastic bag.
Around 1 pm, Culwell tossed the puppies into a recycling bin and drove away.
The puppies were left to die in the sweltering, 90F heat for over an hour before a homeless man heard the puppies cries and rescued them.
The "Good Samaritan," who has not been identified, was collecting bottles to recycle when he found the plastic bag with the newborn puppies inside.
He took the bag and left them at the NAPA Auto Parts store where a customer told staff members of the situation.
Jazzy Espino, 23, is a store employee who was there when the incident occurred.
She told the Daily Mail, "The dumpster is on the side of our store, no one ever goes back there.
"If it wasn’t for the homeless guy digging through the trash minutes later, they wouldn’t have been found."
Authorities in Southern California trying to identify woman seen on surveillance video tossing seven newborn puppies into dumpster.— ABC News (@ABC) April 22, 2019
Officials say a man who was rummaging through the dumpster spotted the puppies and saved their lives. https://t.co/vPSD0swX1p pic.twitter.com/gb8P8vhbmR
Employees brought the puppies inside from the heat and placed them in a box.
"The puppies were really wet and sweating because they were so hot," Espino said.
"They were crying and biting on our fingers because they were just so hungry.
"We were my holding the puppies to give them comfort."
Co-workers watched the surveillance tapes and saw the moment Culwell discarded the puppies.
Espino said, "It’s heart-breaking, she needs to like get a jail.
"I'm so glad she was caught because they found 40 more dogs in her house."
When authorities arrived at Culwell's home, they discovered 38 dogs that needed to be impounded to make sure they were being properly cared for at an animal shelter in Thousand Palms.
Riverside County Department of Animal Rescue Services representative John Welsh said that the other dogs in Culwell's care were not in great conditions and were "fearful" when rescued.
The dogs rescued from Culwell's care are now up for adoption.