A Staten Island man who kept over two dozen Siberian huskies dogs and puppies in “deplorable” conditions have been charged with animal cruelty.
Victor Quinteros, 59, was indicted by a grand jury after an investigation by the Staten Island District Attorney’s Office and the New York City Sheriff’s Department discovered the dogs in a secluded lot in the Tompkinsville neighborhood of Staten Island.
Investigators executed a search warrant on Quinteros’ lot, which was surrounded by trailers, an old bus and an RV, on July 29.
As soon as they entered, they saw five huskies on the loose in what they described as “unhealthy and untrue conditions”.
When they opened the door to one of the trailers, 10 more huskies came running out, apparently looking for food.
The dogs drank from what the Sheriff’s Office described as “a small kiddie pool filled with dirty, smelly water.” The pool was the only source of water on the property.
The only food was kept in a big white bucket and there were maggots crawling in it, they said.
Investigators described the inside of the trailer as “extremely hot and stuffy, with no light fixtures or air flow” and said it was “covered in urine and fecal matter.”
An adult husky was found under the trailer nursing eight puppies. One of them was already dead.
Two more dogs were found in another trailer with the same condition. One of the dogs was lying on its side and did not respond until it received medical attention.
The dogs were taken to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), where they received medical treatment.
“This defendant neglected to provide for the basic needs of twenty-four huskies under his care, and heartlessly chose to abandon these beautiful creatures in deplorable and unsafe conditions without access to adequate food or water,” said Richmond County District Attorney Michael McMahon.
According to investigators, authorities were tipped off after Quinteros’ neighbors noticed the appalling conditions.
“It’s important to acknowledge and recognize the importance of the community reporting what they saw so we can mobilize in response,” said New York Sheriff Anthony Miranda. “We’re glad the Huskies are in better and more compassionate hands”
A month earlier on June 29, Quinteros beat a woman who was watching the dogs after hearing them howling and barking, the New York Daily News reported.
Quinteros is also charged with assault and harassment from the earlier incident, police sources told the newspaper.
The Daily News also reported that the Quinteros have refused to officially surrender the dogs, refusing to consent to the animals being spayed, neutered and microchipped.
Quinteros was also indicted on nineteen charges related to property damage, in addition to the animal cruelty charges.
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