Pit bull dies after being left in hot car for hours

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EL CAJON, Calif. — A woman is expected to face an animal cruelty charge for allegedly leaving her dog unattended in her car in a sun-baked El Cajon parking lot for hours, leading to the animal’s death amid triple-digit temperatures, police reported Monday.

Victoria Williams was inside the El Cajon Courthouse attending to some sort of legal matter shortly before 1:30 p.m. Friday when a citizen flagged down deputies to report seeing a distressed pit bull inside a vehicle parked outside the complex with its doors locked and all the windows rolled up, according to El Cajon police.

The sheriff’s personnel had to break into the car to get to the dog, who by then had died, ECPD Lt. Walt Miller said.

“Officers were able to determine that the temperature in the vehicle was approximately 135 degrees, while the outside temperature was 95 degrees,” Miller said.

Williams, a 46-year-old resident of Brawley in Imperial County, was arrested and booked into the Las Colinas women’s detention center in Santee. She was released on bail Saturday morning, a jail clerk said.

Though results of postmortem tests are pending, investigators believe the dog died of prolonged exposure to intense heat, the lieutenant said.

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