PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla.-- St. Lucie County's Animal Control says what they found in the backyard of a home on Southeast Morningside Boulevard in Port St. Lucie made them angry.
Four pit bulls in medical and nutritional distress were tied up. One named Lady was in such bad shape she had to be put down.
"The heat index was over 102 that day," said Animal Control officer Tandy DeMag. It was July 31.
Part of Lady's lips were gone. Police say dog owner and suspect Michael Hill never tried to help her.
An Animal Control officer says Lady was extremely thin, and she had an unusable leg and wounds. The sight of her brought vet techs to tears.
"They were crying over her. They were so upset and just could not believe that she could have been left untreated like that," DeMag said.
Port St. Lucie Police say she wasn't the only dog Hill mistreated. Court documents say Bucky had an injured front leg caked with dirt and a "muddy brown discharge."
Lady Jr. was emaciated, with wounds on her head, and the report says Blacky had torn ears.
32-year-old Hill was taken into custody. He's charged with animal cruelty and animal confinement without sufficient food or water.
Records show Animal Control has been to this property 30 times. Four of those times, the agency actually took Hill's pets into its custody.
DeMag is hoping a judge rules that Hill can never have animals again.