SAPD: While suspect was away for work, dog carcass rotted in his apartment

Warrant: Complaints about foul odor leads maintenance worker to decomposing dog

SAN ANTONIO – A man is facing a charge of cruelty to a nonlivestock animal after a maintenance worker found a bloated, decomposing dog carcass in a wire cage in his apartment, an arrest affidavit states.

Jose Torres-Vidaurri, 30, was arrested Saturday. According to an arrest affidavit, a neighbor complained March 25 about a foul odor emanating from Torres-Vidaurri's apartment in the 3400 block of Fredericksburg Road, prompting a maintenance worker to enter the unit in search of the source.

The maintenance worker saw a light on in the laundry room and when he opened the door, he saw the "bloated body of a dead dog in a wire kennel," the warrant states. 

Apartment managers told police that Torres-Vidaurri was last seen March 18, according to court documents. When an Animal Control officer collected the dog's remains for examination, the officer noted that the thermostat read 87 degrees and that the apartment was unkempt, police said. The warrant states that the animal was surrounded by feces and maggots and that there were three empty bowls in the wire kennel.

ACS officials were unable to perform a necropsy on the animal because it was too severely decomposed and there was "only bones, fur and some skin" left on the dog. A veterinarian said no organs or soft tissue remained on the terrier. 

Apartment managers identified Torres-Vidaurri to authorities as the tenant of the apartment where the dog was found, records state. Torres-Vidaurri answered his door when police came looking for him Friday and investigators interviewed him about the maintenance worker's discovery, the affidavit sates.

During the interview, he told investigators that he had been away for work for over a week and a friend was supposed to be looking after the dog, the warrant states. Torres-Vidaurri was unable to provide contact information for the friend, according to the warrant.