NILES, Ohio (WKBN) – Police say that a man has been charged after officers found a dog left in a detached garage over the weekend.
Stanley Jones, 41, of Niles is charged with cruelty to animals, a second-degree misdemeanor. He was arraigned Tuesday when bond was set at $25,000. He’s due back in court On Nov. 20.
Niles police responded to a home on the 400 block of Hyde Avenue Sunday afternoon.
People who live in the area were worried about a dog they heard barking from inside a garage for about four days. According to a police report, a caller told police that the resident appeared to have moved out in the first week of October and the caller had seen random people come and go but not the resident since then.
According to the report, the responding officer could hear a dog whimpering inside. Police body camera video captured the moment an officer was able to open the garage and a German shepherd ran out.
Investigators say there wasn’t any food or water in the garage.
“It was probably very traumatic for the dog, and a lot of the elderly neighbors were concerned because most of them seem to be pet owners, and they were very alarmed that somebody could put an animal in the garage and just forget about it for a week,” said Niles police Capt. John Marshall.
The report states that police spoke with the owner of the home, who confirmed that the resident was still paying rent. Police then spoke with the renter who said a family member had been staying at the home because she was moving.
The family member told an officer that the dog belonged to the renter and that she was supposed to care for it and that it had only been in the garage “a couple days.”
The dog, now named Natasha, is currently being cared for by the Healthy Hearts and Paws Project.