The Polk County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) recently stated that Tamesha Knighten, a 51-year-old nurse from Florida, was apprehended on Wednesday on charges of animal cruelty. The arrest was made following allegations that she had poisoned the pets of her neighbor.
As per the report, authorities were notified when Pancake and Luna, two cats, succumbed on August 16, 2023, within a few hours of each other. The owners observed symptoms such as foaming at the mouth, distress, pain, and difficulty breathing in both cats. Approximately four hours later, the owners discovered that their Chihuahua, pregnant with eight puppies, was also missing.
Upon locating her, Daisey, the pregnant Chihuahua, was found deceased along with all the puppies she was carrying.
Sheriff Grady Judd emphasized during a news conference on Friday that individuals should refrain from poisoning innocent animals unless they intend to face legal consequences and end up in jail.
The owners informed investigators that Knighten had previously made threats to poison their pets if they entered her yard. On the day of the pets’ deaths, they observed her outside. Authorities discovered a white bowl with a mixture of white meaty substance and another dark-colored material.
When questioned about the bowl’s contents, Knighten asserted that the dark substance was special seasoning. She explained that she had placed a food bowl outside as part of her routine of feeding the animals in the vicinity.
Sheriff Grady Judd explained that the process leading to the arrest spanned several months, primarily due to the necessity of obtaining laboratory results. These results revealed the use of the chemical Phorate in the tragic incident that led to the demise of the three pets. The extended duration of the investigation highlights the meticulous effort undertaken by law enforcement to gather and analyze crucial evidence, ensuring a comprehensive understanding of the circumstances surrounding the pets’ untimely deaths.