Patti Rechelle Coleman, 42, was arrested on Monday afternoon by the Van Zandt County Precinct 2 Constable’s Office on a felony animal cruelty charge after the SPCA of Texas, the Van Zandt County Precinct 2 Constable's Office and the Van Zandt County Sheriff’s Office seized 11 cruelly treated animals abandoned at a property in Van Zandt County on Wednesday, June 12, 2019. Coleman was booked into the Van Zandt County Detention Center and charged with Cruelty to Non-Livestock Animals for “tortures an animal or in a cruel manner kills or causes serious bodily injury to an animal,” which is a third-degree felony. According to the Texas Penal Code, torture includes any act that causes unjustifiable pain or suffering. The case has been filed with the Van Zandt County District Attorney’s Office for prosecution. A bond of $10,000 was set, and Coleman was released on bail as of June 18, 2019.
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On Wednesday, June 12, 2019, the SPCA of Texas seized 11 animals, including five puppies, four dogs and two cats from an abandoned property in Van Zandt County via an exigent warrant. The animals were transported to the Russell E. Dealey Animal Rescue Center, where they received immediate, life-saving veterinary treatment.
The animals appeared to be afflicted with numerous medical issues, including starvation, dehydration, hair loss, flea infestation, intestinal parasites, eyes issues, ear issues and skin pustules. Many of the animals were so weak that they required immediate intravenous fluids. Two dogs were humanely euthanized at the recommendation of an SPCA of Texas’ veterinarian. One dog, the mother of the puppies, was euthanized due to suffering from extensive medical issues, including extreme malnourishment and decompensated shock. Decompensated shock occurs when the body is unable to maintain proper blood pressure, resulting in the failure of body systems and functions. One puppy was also humanely euthanized due to his suffering and unresponsiveness to treatment.
The SPCA of Texas received a complaint of suspected animal cruelty on June 10, 2019, and an SPCA of Texas Animal Cruelty Investigator visited the property on June 12, 2019. The investigator observed animals inside and outside of a residence on the property with no access to food or water. All of the animals appeared to be severely underweight and to have been abandoned for a significant amount of time. Upon witnessing the animals’ dire conditions, the investigator executed an exigent warrant immediately.
A civil custody hearing was held on Monday, June 17, at the Van Zandt County Justice of the Peace, Pct. 1, the Honorable Judge Wade McMillian presiding. At the hearing, Coleman agreed to surrender custody of the animals to the SPCA of Texas. Following the hearing, Coleman was arrested and charged with third-degree felony Cruelty to Non-Livestock Animals.
To help support the SPCA of Texas and its efforts to help abused, neglected and homeless animals and to support the SPCA of Texas' other programs and services, please visit www.spca.org/helptheanimals. To learn more about the SPCA of Texas, please visit our website at www.spca.org.