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Texas Judge Orders Puppy Left in Hot Car Returned to Abusive Owner

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A Texas judge has ordered that Annabelle, an 8-week old puppy left trapped in a hot car last week be returned to her abusive owner.


Last week, Manor, Texas police officers rescued a tiny 8-week old pup from inside a sweltering hot car parked outside a Walmart where she’d been trapped for at least 30 minutes because her owner “didn’t want to waste gas.”

It was about 4:00pm on Saturday when a good Samaritan spotted an 8-week old puppy locked inside a car parked outside the Manor, Texas Walmart store and contacted police.

According to a Manor Police Department report, when officers arrived, they discovered the puppy in distress, crying, panting, and trying to find shade beneath a rear passenger seat inside the Ford Focus. All four windows were rolled up and the sunroof was slightly opened.

Temperatures outside at the time were around 100-degrees. It was much hotter inside the vehicle.

As seen in the dashcam video below, officers reached through the partially opened sunroof with a tire iron to press the doors unlocked and rescue the struggling dog.

In addition to suffering from the extreme heat, officers said the was puppy infested with fleas, had several lesions, and appeared to be in poor condition.

The dog’s owner, 20-year old Chandler Bullen, returned to his vehicle as officers were providing the puppy with water and trying to cool her off.

He told police that he’d been shopping inside the Walmart store for about 30-minutes. He explained that he’d left his dog, an 8-week old Shepherd-mix named Annabelle, in the car because he didn’t want to waste his gas to either drive the pup home or leave the vehicle and air conditioner running.

“The officers just spoke with him and asked him why, you know, they left the animal in there with the windows up and the extreme heat,” Manor Police Sgt. Randall Anderson told KXAN. “And his reaction was, basically, he didn’t want to waste gas.”

Bullen was arrested on a single charge of Cruelty to Non-Livestock Animals, a Class A Misdemeanor, after he “knowingly and intentionally failed unreasonably to provide necessary shelter and water for an animal in his custody.”

In a hearing on Thursday, a Manor Municipal Court judge ruled that Bullen could have 8-week-old Annabelle back, despite facing an animal cruelty charge.

Since last Saturday when she was rescued, Annabelle has been at the Austin Animal Center for treatment. She will be released to Cullen when he pays fees totaling around $200.

Bullen will also have to appear in court in 30 days along with Annabelle and proof that the dog has been to a veterinarian.

Do you think Annabelle should have been returned to her abusive owner? Weigh in with a comment below.

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  1. Avatar Of Linda



    I, too, would like info on how to contact this judge. In my opinion, what he did by allowing this scum to have the puppy back, is almost guaranteeing the pup a death sentence. Hopefully, if the monster doesn't have money for gas to keep the car running, let alone afford vet bills, he won't come up with the money to pay fines!

  2. Avatar Of Brenda



    NO,DO NOT GIVE THE PUPPY BACK TO HIS ABUSER! What judge in his right mind would make such a ruling? This is just the type person that should never be able to own a dog and the type judge that should not be allowed on the bench. Bless those who rescued this poor pup before he died from heat exposure.

  3. Avatar Of Robin



    Judge is an idiot! There's no way this guy should get that puppy back. Didn't want to waste gas. Seriously!! Hopefully the guy doesn't pay the $200 in fees to get the dog back since he's so worried about spending a little money on wasting gas to keep the dog cool and out of danger. This guy should go to jail and never be allowed to have an animal ever again.

  4. Avatar Of Olga Veter-Eluska

    Olga Veter-Eluska


    Animal abusers shoud be forbidden to own pets for life. This poor dog should have gone to a loving home.

  5. Avatar Of Joe Funari

    Joe Funari


    Contacted Austin Animal Center. I'll pay the fee but Annabel comes with me!

  6. Avatar Of Carol Lovallo

    Carol lovallo


    Giving the puppy back is unconscionable ! Didn't want to wast gas? He will never dole out th money to get it back. Makes my heart ache!

    • Avatar Of Francesca Soldano

      Francesca Soldano



  7. Avatar Of Peggy



    He should never of got that dog back the judge was wrong

  8. Avatar Of Anna



    Absolutely not!!!

  9. Avatar Of Maggie




  10. Avatar Of Terri



    Shame on the judge please post how we can write or email that judge or fax him why we think the dog should be taken away now.

  11. Avatar Of Patricia



    The judge made a very bad decision since the pup also showed signs of neglect and abuse. Why would anyone in their right mind send a defenceless pet back to their owner!!? Makes no sense.

  12. Avatar Of Wanda Gonzalez

    Wanda Gonzalez


    How could this "judge" return the puppy to that asshole. It is a big mistake because that kid is going to do it again and I hope next time the puppy doesn't die. It is always the case that something really bad needs to happen for people to take action. I pray to God that the puppy will be safe.

  13. Avatar Of Laurie



    Shame on this judge! How stupid can you be?! Hopefully this guy doesn't pay the $200 to the animal center so he doesn't get the dog back. Maybe then this pup could be adopted to a loving home.

  14. Avatar Of Linny Miller

    Linny Miller


    NO!!!!! I have no understanding of this judge's decision.

  15. Avatar Of Shirley Sowden

    Shirley Sowden


    I would like the name of the judge. He is a moron.This 20 year old didn't want to waste money on gas or flea treatments. How is he going to pay fines,get this dog to a vet? He should have to pay for the boarding and care at the animal shelter. Let someone who will care for have this sweet puppy.

    • Avatar Of Wynette Jameson

      Wynette Jameson


      I agree. He should never own another animal. What a jerk. I thought the FBI declared all animal abuse a felony b/c it is a precursor to abusing and killing humans.

    • Avatar Of Connie Annis

      Connie Annis


      This is totally OUTRAGEOUS,REALLY!!! Show ALL these remarks to this judge, I actually wonder where he became educated?? Sit in a closed car for a min. Mr. Judge, and see how hot you become, see if you can handle it! now put on a fur coat and sit there for half an hour see if that little bit of window open helped out much!! This actually causes severe brain damage and causes death in a matter of minutes!! This boy needs this dog taken away, severely fined for all the dogs costs! Put on a national dog abuse registry and NEVER BE ALLOWED TO OWN ANOTHER ANIMAL EVER AGAIN!!! ALSO JAILED FOR MIN. 30 DAYS, OR 90 DAYS PAROLE OF CLEANING DOG CAGES AT THE ANIMAL SHELTER. Apparently, this judge needs some schooling before practicing as a judge???

    • Avatar Of Glenn Glenn says:

      Found the two judges at the courthouse, not sure which one heard the case and gave his decision.
      The first is Bill. Gibson and the second judge is Jeffrey Lewis. Hope this helps.

  16. Avatar Of Coraleen



    Why, yes, he should get Annnbelle back so she can be taken into someplace air-conditioned for a half hour while Mr. Bullen gets left in the car in the full sun with it 100deg F outside with the doors taped shut.

  17. How the hell is he gonna pay for vet care when he didn't want to waste money on gas? He CANNOT afford this animal. Needs to go to rescue that will care for it and find them a home!

  18. Avatar Of Allison Williams

    Allison Williams


    No!!!! Who is the judge?!

  19. Avatar Of David Eisemann

    David Eisemann


    Horrible decision. This child should be restricted from owning any animal until he can show that he knows how to treat them properly. If this puppy now dies due to his owners neglect, the judge should be charged.

  20. Avatar Of Christy



    Absolutely not. If he didn't want to waste a few cents worth of gas to keep her from dying why would the dog be returned to him? Bad decision judge.

  21. He shold not get the puppy back

  22. Avatar Of Holly Goerts

    holly goerts


    Hell no. He will abuse that pup again. He will probably beat the poor thing if he has to pay fines or face jail time.

  23. Avatar Of Siobhan Lee

    Siobhan Lee


    Definitely not, should be banned from keeping any sort of animal. Unfortunately we will never be able to get rid of stupidity, but we can make sure that stupid people like this youth cannot repeat their particular stupidity. Shame on the judge.

  24. Avatar Of Tiffany



    No! Give her to a family that deserves her. Someone that will take care of her and lover her.

  25. Avatar Of S



    This judge should be ashamed of themselves. You returned this defenseless baby to a known animal abuser who almost killed her by letting her suffocate in a locked, hot car. Anyone with common sense knows better. The judge made an awful decisions, you are supposed to be their voice!

    • Avatar Of Cs



      S – you're 200% right, the judge should be ashamed for returnung the dog; so, so sorry for 8-week-old Annabelle in the hands of this bastard!

  26. Avatar Of Lorena



    NO!!! He should not get the puppy back! He is obviously an irresponsible and neglectful person, he doesn't need to have a pet. I truly hope he decides not to pay the fines so he won't get her back! God, please don't allow this person to ever have anything to do with animals!

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