Former animal rescue owner pleads guilty to animal mistreatment

64 cats were found dead at her rental home in Dakota Co. last year.
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Caycee Bregel

The St. Paul woman who was arrested over the deaths of dozens of cats last year has pleaded guilty to animal mistreatment.

Caycee Lynn Bregel, 25, ran the nonprofit Minnesota Animal Rescue, previously known as Minnesota Foster Cats and Kittens, out of a rental property in Castle Rock Township, located in Dakota County.

She was charged with 13 counts of animal mistreatment — including one felony — after a number of complaints brought police to the animal rescue, where they discovered 64 cats dead, and another 40 animals in severe neglect.

Many of those animals were emaciated, with no food or water in conditions described by one Dakota County deputy as "horrific."

Authorities also reported an "overpowering odor of animal urine and feces from inside" the property.

Bregel pleaded guilty in a Dakota County court on Friday, and will receive two years' probation, 90 days of electronic home monitoring and 200 hours of community service, WCCO reports. 

The station says she was also ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation, and will not be allowed to "own, possess or care for any animals."

In addition, according to the Star Tribune, Bregel will owe restitution to the landlord as well as the Humane Society for the care of the animals rescued from the property, some of which had to be euthanized.

The paper says the home was ultimately condemned.

Bregel's sentence includes three days in jail, with nearly a year of jail having by stayed by the judge. 

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