100+ dog lovers show up in court to face woman accused of animal cruelty

Police and dog lovers gather outside the Skokie courthouse on Monday. | Garrido Stray Rescue Foundation

When Breanna Evans showed up in court Monday to face animal cruelty charges, over 100 dog lovers in the gallery rose to their feet, sending a clear message to the judge.

Anna Garrido, whose stray rescue foundation took care of two pit bull mixes and their four puppies allegedly saved from Evans’ home, said the courthouse experience was “humbling and overwhelming…to see that many animal lovers show support for the voiceless.”

Prosecutors are taking Evans’ case to a grand jury for approval of a true bill. 

A Chicago police spokesperson last week said officers rescued the six dogs from “absolutely horrible” conditions in Evans’ home last week after they responded to an unrelated 911 call.

An adult pit bull mix, re-named “Frank” by Garrido Stray Rescue Foundation (GSRF), weighed just 30.9 pounds when the non-profit took him in on Oct. 14 — that’s barely half of his optimal weight of 60 pounds, the agency said. He’s packed on a half-pound since then as GSRF weans him back to health.

“Frank” is still putting on weight, but he’s also enjoying the finer things in life — like sleeping on a “human bed.” | Garrido Stray Rescue Foundation

“He is happy and despite all the evil he experienced, he is a loving dog.  He is afraid of loud noises and tries to hide.  When we were feeding him at first, he did not want to eat, almost as if he was not allowed to.  He took his first bites with apprehension and caution,” Garrido told us on Tuesday.

“All dogs are recovering fine,” Garrido said, but Frank was the worst. He needed a blood transfusion to be saved.” One of the group’s other rescues provided the blood to “literally save Frank’s life.”

Tails Humane Society in DeKalb is caring for Frank’s better half—a pit bull mix re-named “Luana”—and the couple’s four puppies. Cops found the four-week-old pups inside a tote bag within Evans’ home, according to police.

“The puppies were named Frank Jr., Christina and Paulie,” Garrido said, “in honor of their father and two police officers who saved them.”

Tails will be offering Luana and the puppies to new homes once they are ready, according to Garrido.

GSRF is posting regular Facebook updates as Frank fights his way back. Some of the “before” photos of Frank and Luana are pretty disturbing, but those are nicely contrasted by more recent videos and pix of the dogs.

Saturday night, Frank slept in a “people bed” probably for the first time, the foundation said in a post accompanied by photos and a video of Frank waking up refreshed on Sunday morning.

River North dognapping
The search continues for Caela, a 17-month-old shepherd mix who was stolen from outside a River North restaurant while her owner picked up a to-go order on Oct. 3.

“Caela” | Help Find Caela, Facebook

Video shows a man unleashing Caela and walking away with her from outside Gus’ Fried Chicken, 401 North State, around 7:20 p.m.

Gus’ is offering a $1,000 reward for information that leads to Caela.

The man who took “Caela” can be seen through the left-hand door. | Criagslist

The “Help Find Caela” Facebook page offers contact information for Caela’s owner as well as search updates.

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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is news@cwbchicago.com