KIRBY, Texas – A man was arrested Wednesday on animal cruelty charges nearly a year and a half after a warrant was issued for his arrest.
Jonathan Suarez-Perez, 30, was arrested on a third-degree felony charge for cruelty to a non-livestock animal and his bond was set at $5,000, Bexar County jail records show.
Kirby police received an anonymous complaint on Dec. 3, 2021, regarding two dogs at Suarez-Perez’s residence, located in the 100 block of Peppermint Lane, that appeared to be malnourished, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.
Officers arrived at the home and saw two dogs chained to the back patio of Suarez-Perez’s home that appeared to be “severely malnourished” with no visible food or water.
Suarez-Perez was issued a verbal warning and told a follow-up would be conducted in two weeks to make sure the dogs were healthy. He told officers at the time that he would get the animals back to health, the affidavit states.
When Kirby police arrived at the home again on Dec. 17, they were unable to make contact with anyone or evaluate the dogs’ health, according to the affidavit.
Officers said they conducted additional follow-ups on Dec. 27 and 28 and were still unable to view the dogs or talk to Suarez-Perez.
On Jan. 3, 2022, Kirby police saw Suarez-Perez and other residents who lived in the home placing items into a U-Haul. Officers saw the dogs and noted that they were still “unhealthy, emaciated and malnourished.”
The following day, officers went to the home again and left a notice on the front door when they were unable to get in touch with Suarez-Perez.
The owner of the home, who rented the residence to Suarez-Perez and his family, then went to the Kirby police station on Jan. 5 and said two dogs “were inside cages in the home and still were in horrible condition.”
According to the affidavit, the owner of the home was “visibly distraught” and told police she gave the renters 30-day notice to vacate the home.
Police conducted another follow-up at the home on Jan. 5 while the homeowner was present and saw that the dogs were “very skinny with rib bones and spine bones showing.”
The owner told police “You need to take these dogs, they’re very hungry, they have not been fed. There was no water with them while in the house. The cage that the white lab was in was too small for the pet and it could not lay down if the pet wanted to,” the affidavit states.
Suarez-Perez and the dog’s other owner, identified in the affidavit as Roxanne Chavez, did not speak to officers as the homeowner leashed the dogs and handed them over to police.
Officers took the dogs to an animal shelter for evaluation and determined that the dogs were a lab mix and a pit bull.
Medical records for the dogs showed them both to be severely underweight and both were listed as having parasites, among other things.
Court records show an animal cruelty arrest warrant was issued for Suarez-Perez on Jan. 18, 2022. He was eventually arrested early Thursday afternoon and also charged with drug possession.
Bexar County records don’t show any charges for Chavez.
It’s unclear what happened to the animals after they were taken to the shelter.