District Attorney Announces Two Defendants Sentenced for Animal Cruelty

Santa Barbara County District Attorney John T. Savrnoch announced that [last] week, two defendants pled guilty and were sentenced in separate animal abuse cases.

In the first case, 47-year-old Lompoc resident David George Brown pled guilty to felony violation of Penal Code section 597(a), animal cruelty, and admitted the aggravating factors that the crime involved a high degree of cruelty and the victim was particularly vulnerable. Beginning in February 2024, Brown engaged in a pattern of abuse to his one-year-old pit bull terrier, named Bree-zee.

Brown kept Bree-zee on a four-foot leash attached to a shopping cart and over approximately a one-month period he was seen smacking, punching, kicking her in the abdomen, pushing her onto the ground, and grabbing and twisting her ear until she yelped. In one incident, Brown ran over to Bree-zee and stomped on her ribs with the heel of his shoe, then proceeded to wrangle Bree-zee by her neck.

The Honorable Judge Stephen Foley sentenced Brown to 72 days in jail and two years on supervised probation. As a result of the conviction Brown is prohibited from owning an animal for a period of 10 years, and he must pay restitution to Animal Services.

In the second case, 42-year-old Bianca Alexis Rodriguez pled guilty to misdemeanor violation of Penal Code section 597(b), animal cruelty. This case stemmed from an incident when Rodriguez allowed two pit bulls in her custody to escape. The two dogs tore through a fence at a neighbors’ home where the neighbors’ three-year-old French Bulldog, Thor was located.

One of the pit bulls grabbed Thor by his head and began attacking him. The pit bull carried Thor back to the home where Rodriguez was staying. Rodriguez watched as Thor lay bleeding for three hours before Thor’s owner came home and discovered what happened. Thor died from his injuries at the veterinary hospital.

The Honorable Judge Denise Hippach sentenced Rodriguez to 84 days in jail. Rodriguez is prohibited from owning an animal for 10 years, and she is ordered to pay restitution to Thor’s owners.

These cases send a strong message to the community that animal cruelty will not be tolerated, and perpetrators will be held accountable. It reinforces the importance of reporting such incidents and underscores the role of law enforcement and legal authorities in protecting animals. By holding the perpetrators accountable, it brings closure to those affected and serves as a deterrent to potential offenders.

The successful prosecution of these cases highlights the dedication of our Animal Control Officers, the effectiveness of legal measures, and the commitment to upholding animal welfare within the community. It sets a precedent for future cases and emphasizes the significance of taking action against animal cruelty. You can report animal abuse/neglect here: https://www.countyofsb.org/1380/Abuse-Neglect

For more information on adoption, fostering, volunteering, or spaying/neutering services, please contact Santa Barbara County Animal Services at sbcanimalservices.


Written by SBCDistrictAttorney

Press releases written by the Santa Barbara County District Attorney's office. Learn more at da.countyofsb.org

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