Details of alleged animal neglect revealed in Lawrence County Sheriff report

Published: Oct. 21, 2020 at 3:31 PM MDT
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WHITEWOOD, S.D. (KEVN) - We have new details about the Lawrence County man accused of animal abuse and neglect.

Thomas L. Mraz is charged with five counts of felony animal cruelty and 26 counts of animal neglect.

According to the warrant issued by the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office, Mraz’s Whitewood property was overrun with the neglected dogs. The case report claims at least one dog was malnourished, another dog’s hind legs were paralyzed, and still, another had a swollen snout from porcupine needles. The malnourished dog, a female, also had six puppies, which were living in a bathtub.

The documents also claim dead puppies were found in a van on the property, with other dogs living in the same van. One of those diseased puppies, according to the documents, appeared to have been partially eaten by dogs. More puppies were found in a freezer. According to police, Mraz said he couldn’t bury the dogs because other dogs would dig up the bodies and cannibalize them.

The statement adds that deputies noted strong odors of feces and urine from vehicles and buildings on the property, but did *not* notice food or water placed for the animals.

The dogs have been sent to the Western Hills Humane Society. Mraz is scheduled to make a court appearance next week.

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