Man leaves severed dog paws at ex-girlfriend's home

Sep 12, 2014 9:18 AM by Alyssa Deitsch

A man is in police custody after being accused of abusing his ex-girlfriend, stalking her, and sending her menacing text messages.

The Redding Police Department was contacted by a woman, reporting she had been a victim of domestic violence and stalking at the hands of her ex-boyfriend, 34-year-old Ryan Watenpaugh. She said Watenpaugh continued to send her text messages after they separated; he reportedly texted various things he planned to do to her missing dog, including he cooked and served the dog to her.

On Tuesday, the victim said Watenpaugh left a bag at her front door and inside the bag were the paws of her Pomeranian, "Bear." Bear had been missing since August Fourth, when the victim says she and Watenpaugh got into a fight and she fled the home. When she returned, Watenpaugh and the dog were both gone.

The victim reported she had been a victim of abuse for several months during their tumultuous relationship. She said she tried to escape on two occasions but Watenpaugh held her against her will.

Police obtained arrest and search warrants for Wattenpaugh Wednesday, and arrested him during a traffic stop Thursday on the 8000 block of Silver Bridge Road in Palo Cedro. When police later searched his home, they found Romanian variant AK-47 assault rifle and multiple high capacity magazines.

He was booked into Shasta County Jail on charges of domestic violence, stalking, animal cruelty, and imprisonment. His bail is set at $250,000.

During an interview with investigators, Watenpaugh reportedly admitted to leaving the dog paws at the victim's home and sending texts, but denies killing or cooking her dog.


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