A Mableton woman was recently arrested after police said she left her puppy sitting in a cage inside a minivan with a temperature averaging 123 degrees.
Endia Cox-Works told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Monday that she was inside Cumberland Mall grabbing food with her children for 15 minutes, longer than she thought.
“It was a mistake to leave the puppy in the car,” she said about 10-month-old Avery.
A Cobb County police report said an officer responded to a call of a dog in a car at 2 p.m. on June 11 in the mall’s food court parking lot.
The officer found the Chihuahua-terrier mix barking in a plastic cage that “appeared extremely unsteady on its feet” and panting heavily. The window was cracked four inches, but the cage was sitting in the passenger’s seat in direct sunlight, the report noted.
The officer unlocked the door, got the dog out and put her in a patrol car with air conditioning and water.
It was 82 degrees outside, the report said, but readings of the temperature inside the car taken by the officer showed the dashboard was 155 degrees and the floorboard in the back seat registered as 107 degrees.
When Cox-Works came back, the officer was waiting to arrest her.
“I don’t think I was treated unfairly,” she said.
Cox-Works said she was rushing into the mall to get the food and thought she wasn’t able to bring her dog into the mall. Management at the mall was not immediately available to confirm its pet policy and has no relevant information listed online.
“I learned how hot cars get. It was a lesson. I had no malicious intent,” she said.
When Cox-Works was arrested, the father of the children took custody of them. Cox-Works bonded out for $2,420 about 6 hours later on an animal cruelty charge.
As for Avery, she was returned to the family two days after the arrest, according to a Cobb police animal investigator.
In other news:
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.