The case of a crushed 1-pound puppy has taken some complicated turns.
Three people have been charged with child abuse, and police have found that the puppy was accidentally killed by a 14-year-old developmentally disabled teen.
The case of the dead Pekingese mix yielded a police investigation that resulted in child abuse charges against 19-year-old Desirae McGee and her parents, Michael McGee, 38, and Christine McGee, 39.
"The child abuse charges are results of the conditions of the home when the search warrant was executed Sunday," Edgewater, Colo., police spokesman Mike Marchese told Denver's ABC affiliate KMGH Channel 7.
Police removed eight animals from the home, including cats, dogs, kittens and puppies. They are being housed at a shelter in Edgewater.
Desirae McGee first said that she rescued the puppy from two teens who were tossing what she thought was a football. She said when she got closer, she realized it was an animal. McGee said that she grabbed the Pekingese from them and that the boys ran away. She took the puppy to Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital, where efforts to save it failed. Veterinarians said the puppy had internal injuries and breathing problems.
Police executed a search warrant at McGee's home Sunday. They said they found evidence that led them to believe that the puppy actually belonged to McGee.
Police then determined her 14-year-old brother had accidentally stepped on the puppy.
Conditions in the home led police to remove the animals.
"All of the animals are in good health. It's our goal to make certain they are well taken care of while Edgewater police investigate and find out the facts of the case," said Angela Davis, the manager of the shelter.
"We have placed the puppies and their mother in foster care to be certain they stay healthy and in a stress-free environment. The future of these animals depends on the outcome of the case."