STOCKTON, Utah, Sept. 15, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — A Stockton woman has been arrested on animal cruelty charges.
Kristin Rasmussen was arrested on a warrant stemming from animal cruelty and other local animal violations, said a news release from Stockton Police Department.
“On Wednesday, Sept. 8, it was reported that a Great White Pyrenees was running loose in the Rawhide subdivision,” the news release said. “Stockton Police responded to the area and learned that several neighbors had witnessed the dog running from the property belonging to Kristin Rasmussen, and that the dog had been placed back in her yard.”
Stockton police then made contact with Rasmussen, who claimed she had never seen the dog and that someone just dropped it at her property. Rasmussen stated she had just returned from Missouri. She requested Stockton PD impound the dog as a stray; which they did. Stockton police noted the dog was underweight and seemed skittish around people, the news release said.
On Thursday, Sept. 9, Stockton police were contacted by witnesses who saw the dog in Rasmussen’s field. The dog had reportedly been locked in a kennel, with no food, water, or shelter since Saturday, Sept. 4.
One of these witnesses also informed Stockton police of a Facebook post where Rasmussen allegedly requested the dog from a man who was giving the Great Pyrenees dogs away to a “good home” on Sept. 4.
“Stockton police located the Facebook post and was able to contact the previous owner of the dog,” the news release said. “He informed investigators that he had indeed spoken to Kristin Rasmussen via Facebook messenger. He stated that Kristin requested the dog, promising a good home. The man stated the dog was happy and healthy in his care. Kristin informed the male she was back east and that an assistant would pick up the dog and take it to her property in Stockton. This gentleman provided these messages from Kristin Rasmussen to police.”
Based upon eyewitness testimony as well as the messages recovered, Stockton police were able to obtain a search warrant for Rasmussen’s phone, as well as an arrest warrant.
On Tuesday, Sept. 14, officials met with Rasmussen and served the search warrant on her phone. She stated to officers again that she was back east and that she had no knowledge of the dog. Rasmussen also claimed her Facebook was locked out because she had been hacked and that she had no access to it. Rasmussen stated that the messages to the original owner would not be on her phone. Stockton police then performed a cursory search on the phone and found the suspect’s Facebook was unlocked and that the messages to the original dog owner were located in her “archived” folder, the news release said.
Rasmussen also had three other warrants for her arrest at the time; including a warrant out of the 3rd District Court from a previous Stockton case, of theft and communications fraud. The other two warrants were for driving on a suspended license, out of South Salt Lake and Woods Cross.