Minnesota woman sentenced after dozens of ill and dead animals found at home

A woman has been sentenced after police found 64 dead cats, 43 live cats and a 400lb (181kg) pig at a home that she rented.

Caycee Bregel, from Farmington, Minnesota, has been ordered to complete 200 hours of community service, two years of probation and and 90 days of electronic home monitoring, after pleading guilty to 13 counts of animal abuse in court.

The 25-year-old must also undergo a psychological assessment, and she will not be allowed to care for animals again.

Bregel ran a non-profit animal rescue service out of her home and was initially reported when a 400lb pig was seen roaming free at the property.

Image:
Bregel's home was in a poor condition. Pic: Second Chance Animal Rescue MN

Police then found 64 dead cats at the house in shallow graves in the backyard, as well as in freezers, fridges and in the garage.

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They also found 43 live cats, who were in “poor health” and living in bad conditions, emitting an “overpowering smell of urine and faeces”.


                              Minnesota woman sentenced after dozens of ill and dead animals found at home

Image:
Bregel was keeping 43 live cats on her property. Pic: Second Chance Animal Rescue MN

During a search of the property, one officer said the cats were “skin and bone” and living without food and water.

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Another nine cats and seven dogs were also found living in poor conditions at a shelter that Bregel owned but had not yet opened in the town.

The house was later condemned by the Dakota County Public Health Department.


                              Minnesota woman sentenced after dozens of ill and dead animals found at home

Image:
Bregel pleaded guilty to animal cruelty. Pic: Second Chance Animal Rescue MN

In a statement, Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom said: “The abuse and mistreatment of animals in the manner that occurred in this instance was unconscionable.”

The prosecuting team pushed for jail time, but the judge deemed the three days Bregel had already spent in jail sufficient punishment.

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