Naperville woman faces animal cruelty charges after allegedly abusing her dog

Christina Helm, the Naperville woman who faces animal cruelty charges
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A Naperville woman was arrested on animal cruelty charges Tuesday after a report from a concerned citizen revealed alleged abuse to the woman’s dog.

Christina Helm, 32, faces three counts of aggravated cruelty to animals and three counts of violation of owner’s duties, according to a news release from the Naperville Police Department.

She was also charged with one count of endangering the life or health of a child for allegedly committing aggravated animal cruelty to an animal that lived in the same residence as a minor.

Concerned citizen report leads to animal abuse investigation

In October 2023, a citizen told animal control officers they had agreed to take care of Helm’s dog “Olive,” a pit bull mix, while she was away on a business trip.

Authorities say when the citizen arrived at Helm’s residence, they found Olive “in an emancipated state, (she) could barely walk, and had open sores on her body.”

Olive was soon taken to the emergency veterinary hospital, where she was treated for dehydration and starvation, according to officials.

Following the discovery, Naperville police and crime scene technicians executed a search warrant on Helm’s house, and allegedly observed evidence of animal abuse.

On May 23, a warrant was issued for Helm. Five days later, Helm turned herself into the police and was taken to the DuPage County Jail.

She will appear in court for her arraignment on June 24.

Officials say the dog made a full recovery, was released to a shelter, and adopted.

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