Law enforcement, animal rescue squads remove hundreds of animals from a Heartland residence
According to a press release from the Davis County Sheriff's Office, Roger Alan Blew, 45, has been charged with 28 counts of animal neglect, livestock neglect and duty to dispose of dead bodies. Eight of those counts are serious misdemeanor charges, which could carry up to one year in jail each.
The remaining charges are all simple midemeanors which could carry up to 30 days in jail each. Bond has been set at $1,000 cash only.
Iowa DNR officers have also filed an additional 10 charges against Blew. Those charges stem from No valid game breeders license, failure to file annual report for game breeder (2013) and game breeder records violations. All charges are simple misdemeanors.
On Friday, dozens of animal carcasses were removed from a residence on 202 N. Washington Street.
The investigation stemmed after an incident occurred in Ottumwa last week. Law enforcement officials issued a search warrant. Heartland Humane Society and the Iowa Animal Rescue League are taking the remaining animals into shelter.
"Any time you see dead animals it's a bad situation, so you know, we found a lot of that here, but yeah this is one of the worst,â?? Josh Colvin, Iowa ARL Operations and Services Manager said.
Local law enforcement called the Rescue League in to help with the case.
"This morning we issued a search warrant of this residence based on an investigation stemming from the Ottumwa PD last week,â?? Chief Deputy Josh Oâ??Dell, Davis County Sheriffâ??s Office said.
"Last week we had a complaint, a van parked on Church Street in Ottumwa last Thursday had several neglected animals inside,â?? Officer Jeff Williams, Ottumwa Police Department Animal Control said. â??Upon searching that van, we found several neglected animals in the van including three ending up dying inside the van."
As a result, the trailer's owner, Roger Blew, was arraigned Friday on three counts of cruelty to animals.
"Basically we came here for a search warrant to see if there were any animals here in various stages of neglect or dead,â?? Deputy Sheriff Oâ??Dell said.
Investigators found hundreds of animals suffering various stages of neglect. Many unfortunately deceased.
â??Itâ??s a very joint effort,â?? Officer Williams said. â??Weâ??ve got a lot of people here, a lot of crews here and we're probably going to be here all day long.â??
Heartland Humane Society is taking several dogs and cats into its care. The ARL is taking an estimated 200 surviving animals to its shelter in Des Moines.
"To be honest with you I'm looking at this as a hoarding situation,â?? Colvin said. â??It's one of those situations where a lot of things were collected, you know and it was the animals being part of that.â??
More charges against Blew are expected after the home investigation concludes.