by Denise Carey-Costa
Every dog rescuer’s worst nightmare occurs when the dog or dogs they work so valiantly to rescue end up in the wrong hands or worst case scenario, dead.
Yogi and Bullet were two male Pit Bulls rescued from Lisa Lewis Hendren a documented North Carolina dog flipper after a suspicious house fire at her home on September 17th, 2015. They along with 4 other rescued dogs were sent to boarding at a vet in Thomasville, NC for two weeks. All the dogs rescued were extremely undernourished, had skin issues, sores and all were terrified.
Angela did a fundraiser to cover the food, boarding and the required Heartworm tests. On October 4th, 2015 Lauren Hardy offered to adopt Bullet and said she knew of another family friend that was interested in adopting Yogi.
On October 24th, 2015, the dogs were adopted into their new homes under the condition both dogs would be neutered within 30 days and proof submitted. Neither Lauren nor Yogi’s new owner followed through with this.
Around mid-December 2015 things began to unravel when Lauren stated her dog Tucker was not getting along with Bullet and the family that adopted Yogi could no longer keep him either. Yogi was brought back to Lauren but when Angela Allred asked for updated photos of both dogs for a Facebook page, only photos of Yogi were supplied none of Bullet who should have still been residing with Lauren Hardy. And, Lauren never made mention again of the need to get Bullet rehomed.
On January 3rd, 2016 Angela was taking another dog to Lauren for boarding and asked to see Yogi and Bullet while she was there. Lauren stated they were spending the day with her brother. When she asked again about seeing the dogs on January 5th she was given the same story that the dogs were with her brother. Then on January 7th, 2016 a Facebook post stated Yogi and Bullet had been re-homed. This was all done without Angela’s knowledge or approval. And to further add to the suspicion already surrounding the whereabouts of Yogi and Bullet, it was discovered that Lauren gave the dogs to a female named Elisha LeBaron Carranza on December 27th 2015, yet lied to Angela on January 3rd and 5th saying the dogs were with her brother.
She did not divulge the name of the woman she gave the dogs to until February 9, 2016 almost two months after the dogs were out of her custody. She gave Angela Elisha’s address on Wayne Avenue in High Point, NC but advised Elisha did not have a home phone to call her on.
Angela contacted Elisha by phone at her work place. Elisha assured her that she had an appointment to have the dogs neutered the following week, gave an email address to send the adoption applications to and agreed to a home inspection.
By February 25th, 2016 Elisha still had not sent in the adoption applications for both Yogi and Bullet nor had she arranged the home inspection.
When Angela messaged Elisha on Facebook she alleged she came home after being out of town for five days and found her back door open and both dogs missing. However, no police report was filed to corroborate this story nor was animal control called to see if the dogs were there.
A message from two witnesses close to Elisha gave the indication that something more sinister had happened to Yogi and Bullet and Elisha invented the burglary lie to cover it up.
The two witnesses, Jacob Ryan Oldaker and his girlfriend Megan, told Angela both dogs were found dead in Elisha’s home in late January 2016, cause of death unknown and both dogs were cremated in a bonfire.
Elisha denied these allegations.
The plot becomes even more murky when Animal Control Officer Holly Lackey went to Elisha’s home on February 25th, 2016 to see if Yogi and Bullet were still on the property. She advised Angela she had seized 4 dogs from the Wayne Avenue address due to animal cruelty sometime between December 2015 and January 2016, but none of the animals seized were Yogi and Bullet.
Something clearly criminal is going on at Elisha’s property. Animals are being abused, neglected, and possibly killed while in her custody. And to add to the mystery, Elisha LeBaron Carranza and those that claim to know the whereabouts of Yogi and Bullet all have criminal records. Elisha has had multiple charges of larceny on her record. There is a strong possibility she sold the dogs.
Disturbed by this news and worried about the welfare of Yogi and Bullet, Angela Allred solicited the assistance of High Point Police Department and Animal Control none of which are willing to help find Yogi and Bullet.
High Point, NC Police Department Attorney Brian Beasley responded to her email on March 17th, 2016 with the following.
I appreciate your concern for these two dogs. Certainly, if we could prove that the owner neglected them or was cruel to them in violation of the law, we would rush to charge her. But we would be required to prove the neglect and cruelty in court beyond any reasonable doubt. Unfortunately, based on the information provided to me by ACO Holly Lackey, we do not have nearly enough evidence to make a charge and no leads that have not already been followed up on.
Since Yogi and Bullet disappeared Angela has been running into brick walls trying to get assistance from law enforcement and animal control but to no avail. It would seem likely that they would have enough probable cause to question Elisha based on her prior charges of animal cruelty and her history of larceny.
Lauren Hardy, who gave the dogs to Elisha is not offering any information at all to aide in the finding of Yogi and Bullet.
Angela Allred just wants the dogs back safe and has even offered a reward for their return with no questions asked.
For updates on Yogi and Bullet and if you have any information on their whereabouts please visit their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Finding-Yogi-Bullet-High-Point-NC-975185599202242/.
About the Author
Denise Carey-Costa is a journalist, author, and award-winning documentary filmmaker. She was recently awarded the Best Producer Award from the Hollywood International Independent Documentary Awards for her latest film, Growing up with Hollywood (January, 2016). Her first film Tony’s Tale, Tragedy in Arizona (August 2014) was the winner of eight national film festival awards including several Audience Choice Awards. She has also written numerous children’s books promoting kindness and compassion for all creatures. Among her children’s books are A Tale of Three Tails, Edwin’s Flight, Lucky, and Angelina’s Angel. And her non-fiction piece Tony’s Tale Tragedy in Arizona. She lives in Orlando, Florida, where she works with local rescue shelters.