CALIFORNIA -- A Palmdale woman faces up to 14 years and six months in prison after pleading guilty to charges she let her 8-month-old Australian shepherd eat rock cocaine, which led to it being euthanized.
After a judge rejected a plea bargain that would have let her off with a year in jail, Cindy Green, 44, entered the plea Wednesday to animal cruelty, possession of cocaine and heroin, failure to care for an animal and possession of a smoking device.
Under the earlier plea bargain, Green had pleaded no contest to one count of cocaine possession after prosecutors agreed to drop the animal cruelty charge. Under the plea, she had been scheduled to be sentenced to up to a year in county jail and five years' probation.
But Lancaster Superior Court Judge Michael Luros rejected the plea bargain last week, citing Green's prior felony convictions for burglary and a drug charge.
Luros returned the case to Municipal Court, where Green again faced the original charges.
The dog was put to sleep at a Lancaster veterinary hospital in December after eating a gram of cocaine off a bedroom table, where Green had left the drug during a Christmas Eve party, sheriff's deputies said.
When Green was arrested Feb. 26 on the animal cruelty charge, deputies said they found heroin and rock cocaine at her house in the 37800 block of Rose Marie Street.
Deputies said Green left some cocaine on the bedroom table and took the rest to a party in her living room. After her puppy ate the drug, it went into convulsions, began spitting up blood and developed a fever of 108 degrees, deputies said.
Green took the dog to a veterinary hospital, but the pet went into congestive heart and pulmonary failure and had to be euthanized, deputies said
(LA Daily News - April 10, 1998)