Woman charged with abandoning cats at Rhode Island Taco Bell


COVENTRY, RI (WPRI) – A Rhode Island woman has been criminally charged after allegedly abandoning a pair of cats at a Taco Bell drive-thru in Coventry.

Two people were caught on camera Thursday morning arriving in a car, taking two cat carriers out and putting them on the grass outside the building, getting back in their car, ordering food, and driving away. Police distributed photos and video in an effort to identify the people involved.

According to Chief John MacDonald, police took an anonymous tip Saturday identifying the two people. Officers contacted one of them, 41 year-old Stacey Derouin, and made arrangements to have her come to the police department for questioning.

MacDonald said Derouin admitted to the investigating officer that she and a male acquaintance left the cats there, but she said that that she did so after trying unsuccessfully to get several animal shelters to take the cats.

Derouin was charged with two counts of abandonment of animals from a motor vehicle and given a court date of February 8th; she was also charged with not vaccinating the cats against rabies and given a Municipal Court date. After being charged, she was released with a summons.

At this point, her male acquaintance has not been charged with a crime.

Two two cats are in the care of Coventry Animal Control.

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