Police say a Montrose woman stabbed and beheaded her dog, then barricaded herself inside her Locust Road home, wearing a gas mask to withstand the chemical agent officers eventually shot inside Tuesday.
The woman, who appeared to have harmed herself, was taken to the hospital, Montrose Police Cmdr. Tim Cox said. Police will likely seek charges of animal cruelty, resisting arrest and obstruction. Her name is not currently being released; Cox said the agency will be referring its information to the district attorney for review and charges.
Police came to check on life and safety at the home in the 62700 block of Locust Road Tuesday morning, after the woman’s roommate called for help. According to Cox, once that person was able to get inside the home, he or she discovered the dog’s mutilated body and called police.
By the time officers arrived, the woman allegedly responsible had barricaded herself inside the home and would not respond when police surrounded the residence and began calling out commands, Cox said. They continued trying to get her to come out, including by breaking the window of the room where she was thought to be, but, still, there was no response. After about an hour of trying to get a response, the decision was made to deploy tear gas.
“It was our worry that … in harming an animal like that, the same harm could be applied to humans. We wanted to make sure whoever did this could not be doing further harm to other humans, or to animals, or to herself,” Cox said.
When the woman still did not emerge from the home, officers sent in their robotic camera.
“At that point, we had to go in and clear (the house). There were a few spots the robot couldn’t see in,” Cox said.
Officers found the woman wrapped up in a blanket and wearing a gas mask. She allegedly failed to comply with orders to show her hands and come out; officers ultimately had to use a Taser to subdue her, Cox said.
At that time, they discovered injuries that appeared to have been self-inflicted, and she was taken for medical care. The police department’s mental health co-responder deployed to the hospital to assist in the investigation, Cox said.
Officers returned to Locust Road with a search warrant, where they located the dog, stabbed multiple times and decapitated as the witness had reported.
Cox said police do not know why the woman allegedly killed the dog. Other animals found on the premises appeared to be unharmed and will be cared for, he said.
“We’re not going to allow that party to have animals,” said Cox, who also said he has not seen an animal cruelty case of this nature before.
“We take animal cruelty very seriously and will be filing charges,” he said.