SPRING, Texas – A 41-year-old Spring mom has been charged with child abandonment after her 11-year-old son allegedly choked and drowned their neighbor’s dog.
"He needs help," admitted Desiree Gillard, the boy’s mother.
Patricia Martin noticed her little dog was missing from the yard on May 26. She checked her surveillance cameras and saw her neighbor’s son sneaking into her yard and taking her dog. She immediately called authorities.
Deputies arrived to find the boy home alone. The boy said his mom had been gone since earlier that morning.
When they asked him about the dog, he allegedly confessed that he stole it, choked it unconscious and drowned it in a hot tub at a nearby vacant house.
"There is a hot tub there with nasty rainwater. He watched it drown," said Kristin Martin, Patricia’s daughter-in-law.
Patricia Martin was heartbroken. She got Sophie, a Papillon puppy, for Christmas.
"She’s a sweetheart. She was very, very protective of the kids," Martin said.
Deputies were waiting for Desiree Gillard when she arrived home that day, along with the boy’s father.
Gillard admitted she went to Buffalo, Texas to pick up her husband after his truck broke down.
Gillard initially told deputies she left her son with his older sister, but later admitted she left him alone. She said she did not have time to take him with her because she was in a hurry, according to court documents.
The parents were shocked after learning what their son was accused of doing. However, the neighbor said she had heard Gillard say that her son had fantasies about killing animals.
Now the boy is in juvenile custody.
"It’s not normal to kill, to kill animals," Gillard said. "I miss my son. I want him home. He doesn’t belong there. He’s not a gun-toting gangbanger. He’s 11 years old."
Gillard was charged with failing to provide her son with proper adult supervision in her absence. Her bail was set at $5,000.