Three people jailed on 35 counts of animal cruelty in Brookings

(Metro photo)

BROOKINGS — Three local residents were in the Brookings County Detention Center on Sunday after being charged with 35 counts of cruelty to animals, according to a release from the Brookings Police Department.

Debra Schulte, 57, Jordan Schulte, 26 and Brandon Schulte, 28, were all arrested Friday after police executed a search warrant on a home in the 900 block of Tumbleweed Drive and “35 neglected animals were found living in hazardous conditions inside the residence.”

All three were charged with 35 counts each of cruelty to animals and booked into the Brookings County Detention Center, where they remained as of Sunday afternoon.

Cruelty to animals is a class 6 felony in South Dakota.

According to the release, an investigation started early this month when animal control officers received a request for a welfare check at the residence — reporting a concern for the number of dogs living there and the odors emanating from the property.

Both animal control and police made several attempts to contact the owners of the residence in the days leading up to serving the search warrant, police said.

When police served the warrant Sept. 15 they found 31 dogs and 4 cats living in a state of neglect.

The animals were examined by a vet and transported to the Brookings Regional Humane Society and the Sioux Falls Area Humane Society, according to police.

The police thanked the humane societies for their help in caring for and placing the animals.

Linehan is the Register’s managing editor and welcomes comments at [email protected].