DIBOLL, TX (KTRE) - A 20-year-old Diboll woman was arrested for animal cruelty after police and animal control officers found two dead dogs and a pet rat that appeared to have starved to death in a trailer filled with the "odor of death and decay."
Another dog had to be put euthanized because it was severely under weight and on the verge of death. In addition, two dogs and two kittens were found alive at the residence.
Samatha Lovejoy was booked into the Angelina County Jail on Jan. 31 on a state-jail felony animal cruelty charge. She posted a bond of $3,500 and was released on Feb. 1.
According to an arrest affidavit obtained Tuesday morning, Donna Brown, the Diboll animal control officer, and a Diboll Police officer responded to a trailer located in the 900 block of Denman in reference to an animal cruelty call. The complainant told Brown that a black pit bull mix dog had knocked out a window screen and was hanging outside the trailer.
When she approached the trailer, Brown "could smell the odor of death and decay coming from the residence," according Sgt. Norman Williams of the Diboll Police Department. Cries of other animals could be heard coming from the home.
Brown entered the trailer and found a dead pet rat in its tank with no food or water. In addition, she found two dead black pit mix dogs in a bedroom. According to the affidavit, it looked like the dogs had starved to death. Diboll PD detectives said the dogs had been dead for weeks.
Another dog, a red pit bull mix, was lying on one of the dogs, and at first, Brown thought it was dead, too. When she checked its vital signs, she found that it was still alive. Animal control authorities wound up euthanizing the red pit bull because it was severely under weight and on the verge of dying.
"There was another one that had to be euthanized; they don't know how it was still alive," Williams said.
While searching the rest of the trailer, Brown found the dog that was the cause of the original call. She also found a red Doxie mix and two kittens.
"The black pit mix and the red Doxie mix both appeared to have a good weight and to be in fair health," the affidavit stated. "The kittens both appeared to be in the beginning stages of starvation."
Williams said interviews with neighbors helped authorities track down Lovejoy. Further investigation revealed that Greghollon Wayne Oliver, 27, of Huntington, also resides at Lovejoy's home. Oliver, who is listed as a defendant in the arrest affidavit, has prior arrests in Angelina County. Authorities said a judge has already signed a warrant for Oliver's arrest.
"They didn't have a good answer for it - not a reasonable answer for it, anyway," Williams said.