South Carolina man William Leonard Dodson was ordered by a judge to pay a $50,000 bond after taping a dog’s mouth shut last week.
Dodson was arrested on Monday in North Charleston after Caitlyn, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix, was found with electrical tape around her muzzle. Dodson was accused of animal cruelty. He was also forced to surrender a second dog residing at his home.
According to court records, Dodson purchased Caitlyn for $20 in late May. The woman who sold him the dog later discovered that Dodson had taped her mouth shut because the dog wouldn’t stop barking. However, the dog is known in the neighborhood to be friendly.
The witness claimed that Dodson laughed about the abuse case and admitted to chaining the dog in his front yard.
Caitlyn’s muzzle was discovered to be swollen after the tape was removed by a Veterinary Emergency Care team. It was also reportedly bruised and oozing blood.
"We are supportive of the NCPD's investigation and hope justice will be served in this case," CAS Director of Community Engagement Kay Hyman said. "We are eager for whomever committed this crime to be held accountable and punished to the fullest extent of the law, which continues to be one of the nation's weakest."
Though it was believed that the damage to Caitlyn’s muzzle was life threatening, the dog has received laser treatment to save damaged tissue. She has also been showing signs of progress. Before making decisions on surgery, veterinarians hope to she will continue to heal.
"Her life is not going to be easy even if she completely recovers," Aldwin Roman, an investigator for CAS said."[Caitlyn] is going to be permanently disfigured and permanently disabled for the rest of her life. She's healing but the damage is done."
Some people have already volunteered to take Caitlyn after she recovers.