4 dogs die after woman leaves them in car, goes to lunch in New Smyrna Beach, police say

Tesia White, 25, faces 4 counts of animal cruelty

25-year-old Tesia White is facing animal cruelty charges after four dogs in her care were found dead, police said.

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – A woman was arrested Thursday after her four dogs, including two puppies, died in a hot car in New Smyrna Beach while she was in a restaurant, police said.

Tesia White, 25, of Missouri, was arrested on four counts of felony animal cruelty.

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According to New Smyrna Beach police, White left a 4-year-old Goldendoodle, a 2-year-old Boxer and two 12-week-old Goldendoodle puppies in the car while she ate lunch with her boyfriend at a restaurant on Canal Street.

White, who was visiting the area, claimed she left the air conditioning on with the windows up and checked on the dogs once, finding them OK, according to police. White said when she finished lunch an hour later, she found the dogs dead, according to authorities.

Police said the AC was off when the dogs were discovered dead, and it’s possible that the dogs turned the car off.

White and her boyfriend were crying and distraught while standing over the dead dogs, according to the police report.

“I should not be allowed to own a dog,” White said, according to the police report. “I cannot believe I let this happened.”

The police report stated that the heat index outside reached 89 degrees during the time the dogs were left alone.

White was arrested and booked into the Volusia County jail, where she was held on a $10,000 bond.

About the Authors:

Samantha started at WKMG-TV in September 2020. Before joining the News 6 team, Samantha was a political reporter for The Villages Daily Sun and has had freelance work featured in the Evansville Courier-Press and The Community Paper. When not writing, she enjoys travelling and performing improv comedy.

Daniel started with WKMG-TV in 2000 and became the digital content manager in 2009. When he's not working on ClickOrlando.com, Daniel likes to head to the beach or find a sporting event nearby.