NORTH SMITHFIELD, R.I. (WPRI) — Five dogs are in the care of North Smithfield Animal Control after they were rescued from the back of a U-Haul truck in the extreme heat.
Police responded to the Walmart parking lot on Dowling Village Boulevard around 1:54 p.m. Friday following several reports about dogs in distress.
Police said the operator of the truck, Jeffrey Menard Levesque, was exiting the Walmart store when they arrived.
He told officers he had only gone inside to use the restroom, but witnesses at the scene said the truck had been parked for over an hour.
Police say store surveillance video indicated the dogs had actually been left in the U-Haul for an hour and nine minutes.
The five dogs were treated at a local animal hospital and remain in the care of animal control.
Police charged Levesque with mistreatment of animals, unnecessary cruelty to animals, and animal confinement in a motor vehicle prohibited.