26 puppies were found crammed into a crate. Now an arrest has been made in connection to the case.

Source: St. Lucie County Jail, Indian River County Sheriff's Office

Apr. 27 2021, Updated 5:54 p.m. ET

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Earlier this month, a crate of 26 puppies were found in a small crate in Indian River County, Florida. After new evidence, an arrest has been made in the case.

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On April 9, Rat Terrier/Chihuahua-mix puppies ranging from a few weeks to 2 years old were found, according to the Indian River County Sheriff's Office. The dogs were in a crate measuring only 48 inches long by 24 inches wide by 28 inches tall.

On the 15th of April, a tipster said they saw the crate, which was shown in the Humane Society’s post seeking tips about the case, at a home in Fort Pierce.

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The next day, police found security footage that showed the truck with the crate in the back leaving a home.

Sheriff's deputies began working with the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office to track down the truck, its owner, and eventually make an arrest.

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Interviews were conducted with family members of the homeowner and the truck owner. Despite story changes, deputies got an arrest warrant.

The suspect in the case is David Yates, 64. He has been charged with 26 counts of animal cruelty.

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Yates could face additional charges as two of the puppies have since died. The current misdemeanor charges could be upgraded to felonies for those two counts.

Yates will be transferred to the Indian River County Jail once he’s been processed through the St. Lucie County Jail. He is being held without bond, and will go through a bond hearing once he arrives in Indian River County. 


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