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Carroll woman pleads guilty in Black Rock Dog case where 27 dogs were found dead

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Posted at 2:17 PM, Oct 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-08 10:17:51-04

WESTMINSTER, Md. — A Carroll County woman charged in the so called 'Black Rock Dogs' case has pleaded guilty to 11 counts of Aggravated Animal Cruelty on Monday.

Back on April 5, Carroll County Animal Control Officers were called to check on the welfare of some animals at 4302 Black Rock Road in Hampstead.

Responding officers could hear and see dogs barking and jumping inside the home against filthy windows. No one was home and the outside door was padlocked.

Left with no other choice, authorities made their way into the home and were overwhelmed with the odors of ammonia, decomposition and fecal matter, forcing them to put on protective suits.

Crews then made several gruesome discoveries, which included finding 11 deceased dogs, two of which were locked in a cage. The dogs had no water or food, and every part of the home was covered in two to four inches of sludge, worth over $94,000 in damage.

RELATED: 16 more decomposed dogs found on same property where 11 others were found last week

Three days later officers returned to carry out a search warrant and found more dead dogs in the bathtub of the home, and 15 others in totes, stored in an outdoor shed.

In total, 54 dogs were recovered --27 dead and 27 alive.

An investigation led detectives to Laura Filler and John Roberts. Both had been renting the home since 2008 and running an unlicensed breeding operation out of it called "Black Rock Dalmatians" and "Black Rock Puppies".

Some of the surviving dogs were found to have been micro chipped and have since been reunited with families, while 27 others who passed have been laid to rest.

Filler continues to be held without bond at the Carroll County Detention Center until her sentencing on January 17, 2020 at 1:30 PM.

Roberts meanwhile is scheduled to stand trail beginning November 18.