Chihuahua killer facing life sentence

May 21, 2011

Bud Wally Ruiz

A Gilroy man is facing life in prison for allegedly killing his wife’s 6-week-old Chihuahua if he is convicted under California’s “three strikes” law. [MercuryNews]

Police arrested Bud Wally Ruiz, 53, and formally charged him on Wednesday with two felony counts of cruelty to animals and one misdemeanor count of battery on a spouse.

Ruiz allegedly threw the bag he had placed the puppy in across the room during a fight with his wife in which she asked him to leave the dog with her. The bag hit a wall and Teddy was killed.

Because Ruiz already has four convictions for assault with a deadly weapon, prosecutors could try Ruiz under California’s “three strikes” law. The law imposes a mandatory sentence of 25 years to life on repeat offenders charged with violent crimes.


In the day and age of prison over-crowding and early release programs, it seems a bit contrary to be contemplating sending this guy to prison for accidently killing a chihuahua. I’m not so sure I wanna be paying the bill for his accidental crime for the rest of his life, or mine.


Slamming a tiny dog into a wall doesn’t sound like “an accidental” crime to me.

(But I agree that this shouldn’t qualify for a 3 Strikes offense.)


oops. My mistake, Danika. The link clarifies the real situation. I wish CCN wouldn’t give incomplete summaries of stories like that.


I looked for information and a history on this man and didn’t find any. I did find several interesting items pertaining to this current event. I have to agree that this needs a deeper look, 3 strikes as you will see can easily pertain to a single event, he is charged with two felonies or two strikes for the dog when it isn’t clear that this act was intentional.

A: Each charge carries the possibility of incarceration in either county jail or state prison and fees that, at the highest amount, would result in a $26,000 total fine, according to the California Penal Code. (wow, 26K IN FINES, talk about an incentive to charge people)

B: Ruiz has been charged with two counts of felony animal cruelty (Humm it only takes 3 counts to lock a person up for life)

C: Marcella Ruiz said her husband showed up at her house on May 12. He was drunk and she wanted him to leave. She called the nonemergency Gilroy police line for help getting him out. But Bud Ruiz packed some clothes and placed Teddy, the 6-week-old Chihuahua he gave her on Mother’s Day, into a dog carrier. As he began to leave, Marcella Ruiz said she told him she wanted the dog to stay.“He threw it (the carrier) in my direction and the dog hit the wall,” she said, adding that he tripped at the same time. During the interview, Bud Ruiz said he’s never hit or harmed his wife.Marcella Ruiz backed him up on that point. “He never hurt me, he never hit me,” she said. (Humm, yet the police have charged him with domestic violence?)


Does this mean the officers who caused the chihuahua to die during the medical marijuana raids should be charged with animal cruelty?


That would make them guilty of two strikes; since they were willfully insubordinant to the Chief Law Enforcement officer of the State of California, the Attorney General, and in the midst of illegal activity while enacting the raid. Their published stated position is: “There is no such thing as medical marijuana”. One violation of the law, i.e. animal cruelty, second violation; targeting and raiding medical marijuana collectives who were operating within the guidelines.

They were the ones perpetrating illegal activities and should not be protected by their status of law enforcement employees, any and all civil damages should come from them personally and not the State or taxpayer’s money.


Aye Chihuahua! If the wife changed her mind (retracted her allegations) and is not pressing charges, then who is?

Yo quiero Taco Bell…


Roy, there is no indication that the wife changed her mind or ever said anything different than what she is telling the press. It appears that the police interpreted the situation and brought the charges regardless of what the wife (the witness) told them.


Sorry, was going by the BBC’s article which has a line:

Marcella Ruiz accused her husband of assault, though she later retracted the allegation.

But I think you answered this: the police charged him.


I just know that I am going to eat it for this post but here goes. At first glance, I was infuriated with this guy and wanted him locked up forever, but then I read the attached link in this news brief. It would appear that this was an accident, what the wife said about how this all occurred does sound credible. It could happen exactly like she say’s it did.

This man seems to average a felony count once every 10 years and I don’t know anything about his background but I would say that somebody got over zealous here. I love animals and hate bully’s as much as the next person but I think he deserves his day in court before 12 fair and unbiased citizens.

We really don’t know how long he has managed to stay out of trouble, how severe his past actions have been, how many counts he was hit with for “one incident” in the past ( one incident can be 2 or 3 counts).

I know this post is out of character for me but I just feel that this is a bit over the top and that there is something wrong here and I’ve never liked the 3 strikes law once I saw how it was put into practice, it feels as if somebody has gone over the top to lock this guy up for life over an ACCIDENT.

P.S. Anybody that knows me knows how much I love animals and I would never stand for anyone intentionally harming a dog, cat, bird, any pet or any critter and I support the organizations that demand proper treatment of domestic live stock and a humane death for all/any living creature, taken for the needs of mankind.


Who would have thought that I would disagree with bobfromSlO and agree with Cindy,,,must be a full moon.

You’re right Cindy, this 3 strikes thing is way overboard.


Typoqueen, you and I have agreed many times, maybe you don’t remember or maybe you didn’t know when I gave you a thumbs up. I attempted to answer you on the Opinion Piece regarding schools but we had gone so far down the line that the Reply button was no longer accessible, so I will answer you here and I’ll keep it short so as to stay on topic. No I was not talking about home schooling, we will always need the village school. When I said “keep it close to home”, I was talking about the “village school”. I agree that not everyone can home school, etc…….


I would agree that this “article” doesn’t provide enough information to formulate an opinion. How much time did he serve for his prior four assault with a deadly weapon?

How far have we fallen in our standards as a society to think that a felony every 10 years seems reasonable? Yes, he could have multiple counts during a single incident. For example if he attacked four people with a tire iron outside a bar, each assault would count as one. Therefore, he would have four counts in a single incident. We don’t know. If theses four assaults were during one incident, it might make a difference to me. One night of extremely bad judgement vs. four separate assaults over the years.

What we do know is that he continues to resort to physical violence when he loses his temper. The latest was an animal. What about the next time? Are you ready to gamble that he doesn’t continue this same behavior on one of your friends or family member? I’m not.

Give him 15 years. He will probably be dead after that time period anyway. He needs to be out of circulation before he hurts someone else. The three strikes law is designed to punish those offenders more severely who demonstrate that they will never change their ways.


I am in full agreement with you, Cindy.


He’s already got FOUR assault convictions and they are contemplating THREE-strikes prosecution?


Make him do the time at the humane shelter. The three strikes law is the monster in this case and does not serve justice .

Bud Wally Ruiz, 53, gave the puppy to his wife as a Mother’s Day gift, but now he is charged with animal cruelty.

Ruiz has a criminal history stretching back 30 years, with four convictions for assault with a deadly weapon.

Under California’s “three strikes” law, the courts are bound to consider a 25-year sentence for criminals convicted of multiple violent felonies.

However, they do have discretion to impose a lesser sentence if they decide the new offence is less serious.

‘Not a monster’

Police responded to a late night emergency call on 12 May, and arrived at the couple’s home in Gilroy, south east of San Jose in Silicon Valley, to find the puppy dead and the suspect gone.

Prosecutors allege an argument flared up after Ruiz got home drunk.

When his wife, Marcella, asked him to leave, Ruiz threw a travel bag containing the dog across the room, say police.

Marcella Ruiz accused her husband of assault, though she later retracted the allegation.

She subsequently told the local newspaper, Mercury News: “He was devastated. He’s not a monster.” wox


I’m with you zap. Although this guy sounds like he has a lot of demons and he might not be a good guy but life in prison is extreme at best.

Forget the humanity reasons for now. How about the issue that they are letting people out of prisons because of over crowding. We’re talking child molesters and murders are coming out after very little time.

I would rather force this guy into an alcohol treatment program with anger management counseling and perhaps a stint in county jail. Community service as someone stated at an animal shelter might also be in order as well as working with a domestic violence program.

We don’t have room for in our prisons for this draconian 3 strikes law. He hasn’t murdered anyone, he hasn’t molested any children, he hasn’t raped anyone is he worth spending the millions that it will cost to keep him in prison only to come out worse than he was when he went in. On a practical matter, why spend all this money when for much much less he might be able to be rehabilitated


I’ve been so spacey lately, it was you that mentioned the animal shelter.


zaphod: Thank you for the link. It appears as if “perhaps” the suspect didn’t realize the dog was in the bag, maybe. Given that new knowledge, I would modify my earlier statement; your suggestion that the man serve some time at an animal shelter certainly seems more like true “justice” for this case, especially since his wife recanted her charge of assault. The recap here on CCN did not have all of the story that was in your link. I hope the editing will be more inclusive of pertinent facts in the future. Thanks for the link.


I also liked the animal shelter idea. It’d be a win-win for all but the deceased doggie, and a great way for this guy to repent his moment of weakness.


You are welcome bob, I found the link in the story above has even more details after I had submitted the link I found on that very interesting wox


As much as I don’t care for the three strikes law, I do think it merits application in this case. This man does not deserve to out in society period.


As much as I don’t care for Chihuahuas, I agree with you.


What a sick man!!!!!