DENVER (CBS4)– Most dog and cat owners in Denver don’t get the required licenses for their pets. Those who are ticketed and don’t appear in court are in for a big surprise.
Only 20 percent of dog owners and two percent of cat owners living in Denver obtain the required license.
Last summer stranger pulled a knife on Randy and Dottie Sloan outside an apartment building. When they called police for help, Randy was arrested.
“They said we have some bad news… a warrant for my arrest for failure to appear. They handcuffed me and took me to the car,” said Randy.
“I never thought that anything would happen to him because I was flabbergasted when they came in and said, ‘We have this problem. We have a warrant for your arrest,'” said Dottie.
Randy started having chest pains and police rushed him to Denver Health Medical Center. He says he was secured to his bed.
“Four-point restraints. Both arms and legs hooked up to a bed,” said Randy. “For a dog license.”
The Denver Sheriff’s Department said deputies only do that when someone in custody is combative. Randy insists he was cooperating with them.
Court records show the Randy was wanted for failure to vaccinate his dogs and not having a dog license. Police in Denver said the arrest was court-ordered.
“You can’t use discretion when the court says you are to arrest this person on contact,” said Denver Police Spokesman Sonny Jackson.
Matt Townsend of Kittredge was also jailed. He was taken into custody after skipping a court appearance for not getting a dog license.
There are 50 others facing arrest for not having a dog license in Unincorporated Jefferson County.
In Denver, that situation isn’t supposed to happen anymore with a new procedure for those who violate the animal license requirement. Instead, a collection agency will be looking for violators to pay their fines.