On Thursday April 18, surveillance cameras captured video of a woman throwing seven three-day-old puppies in a dumpster near Coachella in the heat of the California desert. The puppies were found by a man rummaging through the trash, who put them next to a storefront, where they were later rescued by a different good samaritan. Luckily, the puppies survived the incident, but law enforcement still sought out the woman who left the tiny creatures to die.
According to the Los Angeles Times, a woman named Deborah Sue Culwell was arrested at her home on Monday by officers from the Riverside County Department of Animal Services after they reviewed the surveillance footage. When they searched the premises, they reportedly found an additional 38 dogs living on the property, which was described as run-down and dirty.
Officers at the scene that the dozens of dogs seemed to be in “somewhat healthy condition,” per the Times, though some did appear to be afraid or aggressive. They are still trying to determine if any of dogs found at Culwell’s home was the mother the puppies that were thrown in the dumpster.
At this time, all of the dogs found in Culwell’s home are not available for adoption because they are considered to be confiscated property. Culwell is being held in Indio County jail, according to the Times.
“There is no excuse for dumping puppies,” Riverside County Animal Services Commander Chris Mayer said in a statement. “Especially in today’s age when we or other shelters would be willing to get these animals to foster parents or rescue partners. This was a shameful act.”