A Caledonia couple facing a list of misdemeanor animal cruelty charges and one child neglect charge is now facing a lengthy list of more serious charges that include felony charges after three animals died.
Yvonne Petersen-Zich and Randolph Zich were charged Friday in Racine County Circuit Court with one misdemeanor charge of child neglect, three felony charges of mistreatment to animals leading to death and 13 counts of misdemeanor charges of mistreatment of animals. If convicted, they face up to 21 years in jail and/or up to $170,000 in fines.
According to the criminal complaint, Caledonia police answered a call of family trouble at 8:14 p.m. March 4 at 4930 Mary Drew Drive. When officers arrived, they found Petersen-Zich crying, and she told them to not mind the house because it wasn’t clean.
Police say 14 cats and three dogs – along with the Zich’s teenage child – were found living in squalor. Two dogs were suffering from malnutrition and other health conditions. One dog and a cat were euthanized because of their poor health, and a second dog died the day after being removed from the home as a result of “suspected cardiac failure and metabolic disease.”
While officers were at the house, Petersen-Zich made threats against herself so she was voluntarily admitted to the hospital, and the couple’s teenager was taken into protective custody. Randolph Zich was in jail at the time for a charge of felony child abuse.
At their initial appearance Friday on the new charges, both defendants were assigned a $2,500 signature bond and ordered to surrender any animals they might still have. They were also ordered to not obtain any new animals and given permission to have contact with their child as the discretion of Racine Human Services.
Both defendants will next be court for their preliminary hearing for these charges on July 3. Randolph Zich was given a revised signature bond of $2,000 on the child abuse charge. He will next be in court for that case on July 14 for a status conference.