The Dogs Ruined Her Marriage: Witness Recalls Words of Accused
Testimony continues at Muddy Paws animal cruelty trial.
Assistant State's Attorney Michael Mermel and co-prosecutors brought a total of eight witnesses to the stand on the first day of the Muddy Paws animal cruelty and animal torture trial Sept. 7 at Lake County Circuit Court.
Two of the witnesses testified about their experiences meeting in November with Diane Eldrup, the woman charged with animal cruelty, about a month before dead and decaying dogs were discovered at the Deer Park boarding and shelter facility.
Courtney Randle, an animal warden for Lake County Animal Control, told the court she was dispatched to the Muddy Paws facility on Nov. 16. Randle said Eldrup told her not to come inside the house because she was moving in six weeks and the facility was messy. Randle asked what happened to the shelter dogs.
“She said some of the dogs passed away and she got rid of the other dogs. She said they had ruined her marriage,” said Randle during testimony.
Under cross-examination, defense attorney John Curnyn asked why she did not put Eldrup’s comments in her original report, but only in a supplemental report written in January. Randle replied that she did not think the comments were relevant at the time.
Paul Moller, a Lake Zurich resident, testified that he brought his two dogs to Muddy Paws for boarding in November over the Thanksgiving holiday. At that time, he did not go into the facility to drop off his dogs.
William Bukovski, a Kildeer police officer, testified that he saw Diane Eldrup outside of the Muddy Paws facility on Dec. 15, a day before the dead dogs were found by law enforcement.
Dr. Shahid Amin, a veterinarian, told the jury that he examined the four surviving dogs after they were found at the Muddy Paws facility on Dec. 16, 2010. He told the jury the dogs appeared emaciated. His examination of the dogs indicated that they were malnourished and dehydrated. He said their condition indicated they had not been fed for awhile.
Curyny commented during cross-examination that the dogs may have been emaciated due to worms or parasites. Amin said a dog suffering from parasites would not take food when offered, they would also be passing worms, have diarrhea and vomiting.
Curnyn said a dog not fed regularly would also lose weight and be malnourished, and Amin agreed with that statement.
Prosecution also brought two rescue workers, Dana Deutsch and Charley Burleson to testify. Deutsch and Burleson transported the six dogs that were taken for necropsy.
Deutsch told the jury she helped recommend which dogs were in best condition for necropsy.
For more coverage of the first day of the Muddy Paws trial: