Poodle thrown from car in New Smyrna Beach, deputies say

3 women stop to rescue Minnie as sheriff's captain arrests 69-year-old woman

Mary Radford.
Mary Radford.

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – A 3-year-old poodle that was tossed from a moving car Christmas Eve in New Smyrna Beach is safe thanks to a group of bystanders and a Volusia County sheriff's captain who watched the incident unfold, deputies said.

Capt. Shane Summers was stopped at a red light around 9:30 a.m. on Canal Street in New Smyrna Beach when he saw a woman drive through the intersection, swing open her driver's door and throw Minnie the poodle out, according to the Volusia County Sheriff's Office.

Minnie tumbled into the road then ran toward a parking lot as 69-year-old Mary Radford sped off, deputies said.

Three women stopped to rescue Minnie while Summers followed Radford's car. Deputies said when he caught up with her, she claimed the dog must have fallen out of the car without her noticing.

Summers and the three bystanders, however, reported witnessing Radford throw the dog, the Sheriff's Office said.

Minnie appeared uninjured but was shaking uncontrollably. Deputies said a New Smyrna Beach police officer arrived to take the dog from Summers' custody then to the Humane Society.

Radford was charged with animal cruelty and was taken to the Volusia County Branch Jail, deputies said.