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Charges filed in puppy mill probe

Daily Press file photo Jen Goodrich, a volunteer at the Delta Animal Shelter, reassures “Humphrey” after he was rescued from a nearby puppy mill Tuesday.

ESCANABA — Charges have been file against a Maple Ridge Township woman in the investigation of an alleged “puppy mill,” according to the Delta County Prosecutor’s Office.

On November 17, Rebecca Sue Johnson, of Maple Ridge Township, was charged with felony abandoning/cruelty to 25 or more animals, a charge punishable by up to seven years in prison, and misdemeanor animal shelters/pounds – unregistered, punishable by up to 90 days in jail. On November 23, Johnson posted a $60,000 cash or surety bond and is not allowed to purchase, possess, or care for animals. Johnson’s initial appearance in the matter is scheduled for December 9 in Delta County District Court.

On August 24, Michigan State Police, the Delta County Sheriff’s Office, and the Delta County Prosecutor’s Office conducted an investigation at a residence located in Maple Ridge Township, in Delta County that ultimately resulted in the seizure of 134 dogs and 20 horses.

Since their seizure in August, these animals were taken into the care of the Delta Animal Shelter. Michigan State Police, as well as the Delta Animal Shelter, have conducted extensive medical evaluations and examinations of each individual animal seized. Since the initial seizure, approximately 100 puppies have born to dogs at the Delta Animal Shelter.

The Delta County Prosecutor’s Office thanks the investigatory efforts of Michigan State Police, and Delta County Sheriff’s Office. The Delta County Prosecutor’s Office also thanks the tremendous efforts of the Delta Animal Shelter, including the numerous volunteers and foster families, Bay Veterinary Clinic, D&D Dog Dynamics, Pampered Pets Grooming, and Countryside Veterinary Clinic.

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