A Morgan Hill girl who ran a nonprofit rabbit rescue for a number of years is charged animal cruelty and different crimes in relation to the demise of one of many bunnies in her care, and the mistreatment of others, in keeping with authorities.
Brenda Andringa, founder of South Bay Rabbit Rescue on Kalana Avenue, was pressured to give up 112 rabbits to the animal shelter following an investigation by Santa Clara County Animal Control officers, says a police report. The investigation started in May, when SBRR volunteers and different involved residents alerted authorities concerning the unhealthy situation of one in every of Andringa’s rabbits, often called Hare-cules, who later died as a result of his accidents.
The volunteers additionally advised animal management concerning the crowded, uncomfortable and unsanitary quarters during which Andringa was housing rescued rabbits on the unincorporated Kalana Avenue property in north Morgan Hill, says the county animal management investigation report. When an officer inspected the property on May 10—following an “emergency” tip from a volunteer—the officer discovered quite a few rabbits struggling below the new solar with no shade in soiled, cramped cages.
“I observed several empty or dirty water bowls, and litter boxes full of feces and urine,” says the animal management officer’s report present in Andringa’s legal court docket file. “(A witness) showed me several rabbits he was concerned were near death from the heat.”
The officer gave the rabbits contemporary water and famous within the report that the temperature on the time was 90 levels. The report provides that the rabbit rescue website was geared up with followers over the kennels, however the followers weren’t turned on.
Andringa was charged by the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office on July 6 with six misdemeanors associated to the demise and neglect of rabbits at South Bay Rabbit Rescue. Specifically, she is charged with three counts of cruelty to animals and three counts of failing to provide correct care and a focus to an animal.
Her subsequent court docket date is scheduled for Dec. 8 on the Hall of Justice in San Jose, in keeping with authorities. Andringa is out of custody whereas the costs are pending, with situations that prohibit her from resuming animal rescue efforts, and from proudly owning any animals aside from service or private animals, in keeping with Deputy DA Shanthi Rajagopalan.
“The District Attorney’s Office takes animal cruelty and neglect cases very seriously,” Rajagopalan stated in a press release. “Our intention is to hold the defendant accountable for the neglect, assist in rehabilitation where possible, and ensure that she cannot harm any other rabbits.”
Andringa didn’t reply to a cellphone name requesting remark. Her legal professional, Brendan Barrett, declined to remark.
The present legal case towards Andringa isn’t the primary grievance about her rabbit rescue efforts. In September 2020, Morgan Hill Police investigated complaints that she was conserving extra rabbits than native ordinances enable at her house within the metropolis limits.
City officers and Andringa agreed that if she moved the rabbits, town would dismiss the case, City Attorney Don Larkin stated. Authorities confirmed that she had moved the rabbits from her house in October 2020, and the case was dismissed in November.
Larkin stated that case originated with “a number of complaints” to the police division concerning the noise and odor related with the overabundance of rabbits in Andringa’s residential neighborhood.
In want of a brand new location to deal with her rescued rabbits, Andringa acquired a lease on the Kalana Avenue property in September 2020, says the county animal management report on the present prices.
Andringa has additionally been named on a “no adopt” listing held by county animal management since 2017, says the investigation report.
Other animal rescue advocates have tried to carry consideration to the situations at SBRR for a number of months, and have actively assisted Santa Clara County with the investigation. A petition on change.org, began by Linda Sue this summer time, requested county authorities to close down SBRR as a result of Andringa’s alleged neglect of the animals in her care.
Two of the present prices towards Andringa are associated to the sickness and subsequent demise of Hare-cules. A witness alerted animal management that the rabbit was “suffering from a maggot-infested, untreated wound,” says the investigation report. The volunteer referred to as Andringa to inform her concerning the wound. Andringa responded that she would seek for a veterinarian to deal with Hare-cules.
Hare-cules died of his wounds earlier than Andringa discovered a vet to deal with him, in keeping with the animal management officer’s report.
The petition on change.org states, “Rabbit HareCules suffered a long, cruel inhumane illness and death under the care of a well known California rabbit rescuer representing herself as a nonprofit rescue, South Bay Rabbit Rescue/Brenda Andringa.”
The cost of cruelty to animals within the DA’s July 6 grievance says that Andringa “subjected (Hare-cules) to needless suffering and inflicted unnecessary cruelty upon the animal, and abused the animal, and failed to provide the animal with proper food, drink and shelter and protection from the weather.”