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Brazos woman charged after abandoning St. Bernard at local barn

Cristan Tejeda
Posted at 1:25 PM, Jan 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-27 14:25:48-05

COLLEGE STATION, TX — A local Brazos County woman is facing an animal cruelty charge, after allegedly abandoning her St. Bernard mixed dog at a nearby barn.

According to the probable cause statement, Cristan Tejeda, was connected to the case after multiple calls from a local farmer, starting on Jan 13., regarding an animal complaint.

Learning of these calls, staff at the nearby Bryan Animal Center were able to confirm Tejeda as the owner by running the microchip located on the dog.

However, they notified CS police that Tejeda had already stated to them she did not want the dog back, and had said she, "would just dump the dog, since they would not take it."

From there, CS police retrieved the dog from said farmer, and began interviewing Bryan Animal Center staff for further details regarding Tejeda.

The staff confirmed, Tejeda, had contacted them on Jan 5., at which time, they explained to her why could not keep the dog, and gave her several options for re-homing it. From there, Tejeda expressed, " she would just dump the dog in Houston."

Reaching out to Tejeda, once more, CS police notified her of the St. Bernard's current location at the Bryan Animal Center. Responding, Tejeda told police, " that her dog slipped his collar, and ran off, while they were on a fishing trip at the Navasota River, 4-5 days earlier."

From there, Tejeda claimed she could not pick up the dog, as she was in Memphis, and that no one else she knew was available to pick up the St. Bernard.

Tejeda was then notified her dog, "Rocky", was going to be transferred over to the Aggieland Human Society; the likes of which, would require Tejeda to cover all fees for housing, prior to being able to pickup her dog.

Tejeda agreed, and from their the St. Bernard was placed on legal hold and provided with vaccinations.

However, upon further investigation, CS police discovered Tejeda had never reported her dog as being missing.

Mapping it all out, CS police found the distance between the barn where the dog was found, and the fishing trip site where he alleged ran away, to be approximately 17 miles.

From there, Bryan animal control officer (ACO) supervisors were interviewed by CS police, who confirmed, Tejeda, had actually used the name, "Joy Ribardo", and refereed to her as a, "stray", when attempting to leave it at the Bryan Animal Center originally. Tejeda had also given the name, Joy, when she got her dog micro-chipped at said shelter.

Attempting to contact her, CS police were unable to get an answer until they texted Tejeda, whom at this point responded, " she was at work, and could not get the dog." From there, Tejeda told the CS officers she could not care for the dog, and asked them to keep it.

At this time, Tejeda was reminded the Bryan shelter could not either, and that she was facing citations if she did not pick up her dog, and for lying about it being a stray originally.

Tejeda then arrived to retrieve her dog, however, commented to a Bryan ACO that, " she would go to Houston and dump the dog, since they would not keep it", once more. Before leaving, Bryan ACO's advised Tejeda of more resources for re-homing the St. Bernard, and offered her other options for help as well.

However, Dr. Jeter, a vet at the Aggieland Humane Society stated from their wellness check on the dog; that the dog's feet pads had minimal wear, appeared in good condition, and that they did not believe said dog could have traveled over 7 miles based on the time frame Tejeda had given.

Based off Dr. Jeter's finding, Tejeda's previous comments about planning to abandon the St. Bernard, and the location said dog was found, CS police charged her for cruelty to a non-livestock animal.