A Lakewood woman charged with woefully neglecting a menagerie of animals pleaded guilty Monday to four counts of animal cruelty.
Patricia Ann Scott, 49, is to be sentenced in Pierce County Superior Court on Oct. 21. She faces up to a year in jail under state guidelines.
Scott also pleaded guilty to contempt of court for ignoring a judge’s orders by possessing a dog after she was released from jail while awaiting trial. The judge had forbidden Scott from having animals while her case was pending.
Scott was charged in March following an investigation by Pierce County Animal Control.
Tipped off by a relative of Scott’s, an animal control officer searched a garage and house and found a number of neglected animals, including a dead dog in a cage and cats, birds, a gecko and guinea pig forced to live in their own waste. Some of the animals were dangerously malnourished, records show.
Relatives told investigators Scott would fly into a rage if anyone tried to care for the animals.
There were concerns about Scott’s mental health, and she underwent an evaluation at Western State Hospital to determine whether she was competent to stand trial. She was found competent.
Deputy prosecutor Patrick Hammond said Monday that Scott was ordered to undergo another mental health evaluation before sentencing to help the court determine what sentence should be imposed.
She’s been released on her personal recognizance in the meantime, court records show.Adam Lynn: 253-597-8644 firstname.lastname@example.org @TNTadam