WINDSOR, N.C. — A Bertie County woman arrested for animal cruelty by Bertie County Sheriff’s deputies pled guilty and was sentenced this week.
Cherelle Askew pled guilty nearly a year after PETA fieldworkers discovered her dog, Minnie, had starved to death and was still chained to a tree. She pled to one count of class 1 misdemeanor cruelty to animals.
Askew is now banned from owning any additional animals and must allow PETA to inspect the only dog currently in her custody, Bella, to determine if she needs veterinary care and/or nourishment.
Askew was sentenced to 100 days in jail (suspended), 12 months of supervised probation and was ordered to pay $878 in fines, attorney’s fees, and court costs.
“Minnie endured a slow, agonizing death as a result of this person’s total disregard for her every need, and PETA’s fieldworkers know that other chained dogs remain out there, at risk of dying like this, too,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “Depriving dogs of basic necessities by keeping them chained is cruel, and it’s criminal—and PETA pleads with anyone who has a dog they cannot care for to call us for help. Do not let them starve and suffer.”
Minnie was found dead alongside several other dogs who were subjected to continuous chaining and chronic privation, known as the “Bertie 5,” whom PETA gained full custody of after suing Askew for custody. The group’s efforts to hold abusers accountable and to ban the unattended tethering of dogs continue. Only two weeks ago, PETA’s fieldworkers found another dog starved to death in Bertie County.
Charges against that owner are pending, PETA reports.