Press Charges Against Dog Owner for Leaving Animal in Hot Car


Target: Sergeant Jason Legleiter of Arkansas City Police Department

Goal: Penalize irresponsible dog owner for leaving animal in hot car, where it was nearly strangled to death.

The quick response of two kind-hearted officers saved a dog from certain death in a Wal-Mart parking lot in Arkansas City, Kansas. The officers had just responded to a shoplifting call when they were alerted to a dog perilously hanging from a truck window by a leash. With just a few brief moments before the dog was strangled to death, the officers cut it free and revived it. Thankfully, the dog survived the harrowing ordeal, but as of yet the owner has faced no charges for seemingly leaving their dog alone in a car in the dead of summer.

The officers have not pursued the case due to failure to prove criminal intent. However, whether the owner “meant” to endanger the dog does not matter. Either way, this person’s alleged actions nearly cost the dog its life. Were it not for the officers’ swift response, the dog would almost certainly have choked to death, if not suffered a massive heatstroke from the 90-degree weather. While it is important to applaud these officers for their service, it is just as important to ensure justice for the rescued dog by making sure that the owner be charged to the full extent of the law for their neglect.


Dear Sergeant Legleiter,

I was deeply moved to hear about what you and Officer Hammond did to save a dog’s life recently. Without your heroic efforts, that poor dog would almost certainly have perished. While I greatly appreciate your service, I also feel as if justice has not been fully served for this dog. Since no charges have been pressed against its owner, there is nothing deterring this person from leaving their dog in a hot car again. And the dog might not be so lucky the next time something like this happens.

To ensure the safety of this dog and any other animals this person might have, I ask that you pursue the matter further and look into pressing charges or issuing a fine. Anyone who leaves their dog alone in a hot car to overheat or be strangled by their own leash should face the appropriate repercussions.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: John Benson

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    thank you for the article and for the quick action of the officers; however, a dog is a sentient being, not an ‘it’
    please help me educate animals lovers to the unintentional use of a term describing an inanimate object]
    thank you again

    • michelle taylor says:

      Sharon Koester, I agree, animals should not be classified as IT.This is highly offensive.Animals are sentient beings.

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