FARMINGTON, Minn. (WCCO) – A Farmington woman is facing animal cruelty charges after a search warrant revealed about 100 animals, mostly cats, in the home.
Twenty-five-year-old Caycee Bregel is facing 13 counts of mistreatment of animals. .
WCCO’s Christiane Cordero spoke with a neighbor, who says she saw the animals’ living conditions first-hand.
Lisa Mason lives just down the street from where police rescued around 50 animals. She told us as a veterinary technician by day, she was upset. And as a neighbor, she had to help.
“That to me would be hell on Earth if I was an animal or a person,” Mason said.
Police found around 50 live animals and about 64 others that were deceased and found in Bregel’s freezer, fridge and garage.
The criminal complaint says that necropsy exams were conducted on three of the deceased cats. The exams showed no contents were found in the stomach or small intestines of three animals examined.
“The doctor who performed the necropsies opined that it would take approximately one week for a cat’s intestinal track to completely become void of food,” the criminal complaint says.
Most of the pets found in the home were cats, plus five dogs, one rabbit, a hamster and a pig named Wilbur.
“I mean there’s feces, urine, just garbage you guys, strewn everywhere. You couldn’t even get in the rooms. There’s cats in the bedrooms with the doors closed,” Mason said.
Caycee Bregel rented the property. She and the address are both licensed under “Minnesota Foster Cats and Kittens,” a nonprofit animal rescue.
The home’s owner told officials he last visited the property in November, and everything seemed normal. No one seems to know what happened since.
“I see a lot of these cases, some are worse than others, but no there’s certainly some sort of a complex,” Keith Streff, with the Animal Humane Society, said.
The Humane Society has taken custody of the animals found still alive on the property.
Bregel is due in court on Oct. 1.