The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office has positively identified the suspect in this case as Salvatore Ted Arena, age 42, of Freshwater. The three dogs, Angel, Becky and Ginger, had belonged to Arena’s brother who passed away suddenly in February of this year. Arena began trying to surrender the dogs to local rescues about one week ago stating that he was moving to the East Coast. Gail Holder of K-9 Angels Rescue had been in frequent contact with Arena and was working to try to get the dogs into foster care. She received a call from him on 08/21/13 just before the dogs were found abandoned in Fairhaven. Arena told her that he had to leave the following morning and that he could not put the dogs in his truck and take them across the country with him.
The Sheriff’s Office will be seeking a warrant for Arena’s arrest. At this time we have reason to believe that he has already left the area. Anyone having information to the contrary is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Animal Control Division, 707 840-9132, or the Crime Tip Line, 707-268-2539.