Man arrested in dragging death of dog

Posted By elaine on December 31, 2009

Grand Junction Free Press

Grand Junction Free Press



An arrest has been made in yesterdays dragging death of a Blue Heeler/German Shepard mix near Grand Junction.  Steven Clay Romero, age 36,  of Mesa County, Colorado, was arrested without incident this morning for aggravated cruelty towards an animal, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the National Park Service announced today.  Romero made his initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Grand Junction this afternoon, where he was advised of the charges pending against him.  The government asked that Romero be detained.  Thus, a detention hearing, as well as arraignment, is scheduled to take place on Monday, January 4, 2010, also in Grand Junction.‪


According to the facts contained in the affidavit associated with the Criminal Complaint, at 4:30 a.m. on December 30, 2009, a maintenance worker discovered the carcass of a dead dog with a rope tied around its neck in the Colorado National Monument.  An investigation ensued.  Video surveillance from the West Entrance station of the Monument showed a double-cab pickup truck entering the Monument at 2:18 a.m. on December 30, 2009, with a dog in the bed of the truck.  Cameras in the outbound lane showed the same truck leaving the Monument at 2:30 a.m. without the dog.‪‪


After reviewing the video footage of the truck, Rangers visited Romero’s residence, where they observed paw prints in the snow of the front yard.  One witness stated he saw Romero leave the residence with the dog, a adult male Blue Heeler/German Shepherd mix, returning later without it.  A second witness said that Romero stated that he was going to kill the dog.  A consensual search of the residence found rope in the garage of the home, which matched the rope tied around the dog’s neck. ‪  The dog named Buddy was allegedly stolen from his owners in Delta.


Romero faces one count of aggravated cruelty towards an animal.  If convicted, the penalty is not more than 3 years in federal prison, and up to a $100,000 fine, and one year of mandatory parole 

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