Woman accused of leaving dog in hot SUV, backing into officer, granted bond

By Greg Pallone, Brevard County Reporter
Last Updated: Thursday, August 10, 2017, 5:08 PM EDT

A Brevard County judge granted a $15,000 bond for a woman arrested for leaving her dog in a hot SUV and battery on an animal services officer at Melbourne Square Mall Wednesday.

In video only on News 13, Latisha Martin, 43, was arrested by West Melbourne Police a half mile away from the mall.

Investigators say she and her family came back to their SUV after shopping at the mall only a few minutes earlier.

She was met by a sheriff's office animal services officer, called to the scene for a report of a dog in a hot SUV, with the windows rolled up.

"It was 118 degrees inside the car," Brevard Sheriff Wayne Ivey said.

The sheriff's office says inside the vehicle, Scooter, a chihuahua-mix, was panting in the heat. The officer made an effort to fine Martin on animal cruelty charges.

Instead, investigators say the family loaded up in the SUV and began backing up.

"They left and struck our animal enforcement officer in the leg," said Sheriff Ivey.

Police caught up with Martin and made the arrest.

Her sister showed up and took care of the children and the dog.

Martin's next court date is set for Oct. 3.

Sheriff Ivey says animal services officers undergo specialized training for their job and carry pepper spray for defense. They are also in radio contact if they need backup.