Couple Charged With 22 Counts Of Animal Cruelty
CUT OFF, La. -- A Lafourche Parish couple has been charged with 22 counts of animal cruelty after deputies said they found dogs and rabbits abandoned in their home, and animal feces and urine throughout the house.
Anthony Wayne Watson, 42, and Sari Lee Watson, 48, were arrested Wednesday near their home in Cut Off.
Neighbors called Lafourche Parish Sheriff's Deputies on Monday to complain that a large number of animals had been abandoned at the house. When officers arrived, they found no sign of any people at home.
When deputies went inside, they found several animals left alone with no food and water. Deputies said they found a female Rottweiler with seven puppies in a back bedroom. They also found seven Shih Tzu/Pekingese dogs and three rabbits.
The home had a strong odor because of animal feces and urine, deputies said.
The house had no running water, but deputies said they found a bathtub half-filled with algae-covered water being used to wash dishes.
In the back yard, deputies said they found three Chow Chows and two Rottweilers in cages. The Chow Chows had no access to food or water, and the Rottweilers' only water was a bucket that also contained algae-covered water, deputies said.
Two days later, neighbors called deputies again to say that the couple who owned the animals had returned. Deputies stopped the couple as they were driving near the house.
Investigators said Anthony Watson had a suspended driver's license, and Sari Watson was holding a 1 1/2-year-old on her lap while smoking a cigarette.
Anthony Watson is charged with 22 counts of simple cruelty to animals, not securing a Louisiana Drivers license within 90 days of residency, driving under suspension and not properly restraining the child in the vehicle.
Sari Watson is charged with 22 counts of simple cruelty to animals and smoking with a child in the vehicle.
Both are being held in the Lafourche Parish Detention Center on $3,000 bonds each. All of the animals were seized and taken to the Lafourche Parish Animal Shelter. The child was taken into custody by Child Protective Services.