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Dearborn Heights Pet Store Owner Arrested for Animal Cruelty

Dearborn Heights resident Hamzi Daklallah was charged with 37 counts relating to alleged animal cruelty in his story, Pet Station.

A case of animal cruelty was revealed in Dearborn Heights Thursday with the charging of a local pet shop owner accused of abusing or neglecting more than 100 animals.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy announced the charging of Heights resident and Pet Station owner Ramzi Daklallah for alleged criminal acts including cruelty to animals, pet shop violations regarding record keeping, and animal industry act violations regarding the importation of dogs. The case involves more than 20 dogs, more than 70 birds, a number of guinea pigs, hamsters, frogs, snakes, lizards, tarantulas, chinchillas, mice and rats.

It is alleged that Dakhlallah, and his corporation Pet Station, L.L.C., engaged in keeping animals under unsanitary and unsafe conditions dating back to July 2009. Additionally, the charges state that he knowingly sold unhealthy animals, while others had improper medical records.

The shop came to the attention of authorities as a result of citizen complaints regarding the lack of food and water for the animals, feces and urine that overwhelmed the pens where animals were kept, and the observation of generally cruel conditions related to the care and maintenance of the animals in the store.

The animals were taken Thursday from the store by the Dearborn Heights Police Department with assistance of the Michigan Humane Society, which is caring for the animals along with the Taylor Animal Shelter.

Daklallah and his business were charged on the following counts:

  • Count 1:  Animals – Abandon/Cruelty to 10 or More Animals (Felony – Four years) Allegation: Animals received inadequate care, food, water, sanitary conditions and medical attention.
  • Count 2:  False Pretenses – $200 to $1,000 (Misdemeanor – One year) Allegation: False representation about the health of animals causing a patron to purchase an unhealthy animal.
  • Count 3:  Check – Non-Sufficient Funds - $100 or more but less than $500.00 (Misdemeanor – one year) Allegation: Wrote a non-sufficient funds check on Pet Station checking account.
  • Counts 4 – 23:  Pet Shop – Violations (Misdemeanor - 90 days) Allegation: Either importing into this state, or offering for sale, an animal that had been imported, and not ensuring proper inoculation of that animal within seven days of importation.
  • Count 24:  Pet Shop – Rule Violations (Misdemeanor - 90 days) Allegation: Failure to maintain proper records on each animal in the shop.
  • Counts 25-37:  Animal Industry Act – Misdemeanor/Rule Violations - Minimum 30 days – Allegation: Violating Michigan Department of Agriculture rules regarding the importation of dogs into the State of Michigan.

"In an effort to profit from their misery, these animals were allegedly subjected to horrific abuse and deplorable living conditions,” said Worthy. “Further, the alleged conduct of these defendants exposed the customers of this enterprise, as well as the citizens of Dearborn Heights and Wayne County, to an enormous potential health hazard."

Defendant Daklallah was arrested and arraigned in the 20th District Court in Dearborn Heights.

Tracy Ali April 13, 2012 at 02:31 AM
This man makes me sick. My husband and I bought our puppy there last July. We happened to stop in one Sunday afternoon to kill some time but after hearing another customer tell us about the horrible conditions, we could not bare to leave without her, we offered him a small amount of cash (well below the asking price) and left with her.... she now has been diagnosed with encephalitis, vestibular and autoimmune disease, we are just heartbroken but at the same time so very thankful that she is under OUR care. This man needs to be put away and sentenced to live the rest of his life under the same conditions that he forced these innocent pets to!
Debora Jackson April 20, 2012 at 12:19 AM
On April 11, 2012 I arrived at the Pet Station to have my dog, Sophie's rabies shots and Channel 7 news was there saying the Pet Station was closed down b/c of animal cruelty. It was a month and a day before from having Sophie for one year and after noticing her symptoms of scratching, shaking her head a lot, vomitting, and she had a cherry eye since I got her. I took her back to him 2 months after I got her and he The owner told me that it was normal b/c she was adjusting to a new environment, but I knew something couldn't be right. When I finally took her to the vet, they told me she had a constant ear infection and a hernia and they had given me estimates of how much all of her health problems would cost. Furthermore, it is well over $600. I love my puppy and I will do what I have to do but it is a shame that someone would treat animals this way.
CitizenDH June 06, 2012 at 04:45 PM
Wondering why it took so long to arrest this guy while animals continued to be neglected and abused. Have to say also that the people who took bought some of the animals had to know that some of the deals they were getting were too good to be true. You have to ask yourself: Why arent other pet stores giving such good deals? Follow the money trail people. By trying to save a buck the abuse goes on, and on, and on and on.
cmg June 06, 2012 at 06:57 PM
I, too, am wondering why after these people bought their dogs there and knowing they came from implorable conditions they didn't see reason to contact the humane society? If I walked in and saw that I would have taken the dog and called. Doesn't make much sense.
Lisa Young September 02, 2012 at 05:50 PM
Are any of you able to go to the court house on this jerks court date we are trying to get a group to let the judge realize that people do care ,so maybe the judge wont be so light on him , the laws about animal abuse are a joke when will people learn that this is where the abuse starts next they will abuse humans ,children etc... if laws where tougher on animal abuse , maybe just maybe the abuser would stop before they reached the point of abusing a child etc.....and be changed forever to do good in the world ,we will never know with such weak laws ,its just sickens my heart ....
City of Dearborn (Editor) September 02, 2012 at 06:31 PM
Hi Lisa, Daklallah plead guilty to some, but not all of the charges last month, and will be sentenced Sept. 12 in Wayne County Third Circuit Court before Judge Thomas Jackson.
Richard Weed September 02, 2012 at 08:30 PM
Islam has a different standard of humane treatment of animals.
Sabina Prevo September 10, 2012 at 03:44 PM
9 am on Wednesday, Sept 12, 2012 Ramzi will be sentenced for these counts •Count 1: Animals – Abandon/Cruelty to 10 or More Animals (Felony – Four years) Allegation: Animals received inadequate care, food, water, sanitary conditions and medical attention •Count 24: Pet Shop – Rule Violations (Misdemeanor - 90 days) Allegation: Failure to maintain proper records on each animal in the shop. •Counts 25-37: Animal Industry Act – Misdemeanor/Rule Violations - Minimum 30 days – Allegation: Violating Michigan Department of Agriculture rules regarding the importation of dogs into the State of Michigan

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