2015 Year In Review

Selected Baseline Figures

  • New Complaints Investigated:  1,864
  • Rechecks:  2,938
  • Inspections:  187
  • Total Individual Court Appearances:  153
  • Warnings:   607
  • Education/Advisory:  518
  • Referred to Other Agencies/Resources:  147
  • No Action Warranted:  449
  • Animals Inspected:  38,742
  • Animals Surrendered:  389
  • Animals Seized:  0

New Court Cases

From January 1, 2015 – December 31, 2015 the Law Enforcement Department (LED) filed charges in 19 new cases.

  • Officer Branca filed charges against Shirley & Edward Aguiar, proprietors of Shirl’s Whispering Winds breeding facility, for keeping their many Dachshunds in unsanitary conditions and neglecting their care (see adjudicated cases below).
  • Officer Branca filed charges against Matthew Marchegiani of Medfield for repeatedly beating his girlfriend’s cat, causing permanent physical and neurological damage. Trial is scheduled for 2/17/16.
  • Officer Allenberg filed charges against Tammy Dupre of Brookfield for allowing her pregnant mare to become emaciated. A jury trial is scheduled for 2/1/16 (see adjudicated cases below).
  • Officer Allenberg filed charges against Andrew Singthongyang for beating a Chihuahua belonging to him and his girlfriend to death. Mr. Singthongyang attended his arraignment with the girlfriend from whom he had been ordered away. The ADA requested a revocation of probation or $5000 bond which the judge denied, despite the defendant being in violation of a court order. The judge ordered no contact with animals (the couple has a remaining dog), no contact with case witnesses, attendance at anger management, and a mental health evaluation. The next pretrial hearing is scheduled for 1/15/16.
  • Officer Branca applied for a clerk’s hearing in her case against Denise Deblois of N. Attleboro for abandoning her Miniature Pinscher in a small carrier in a store parking lot. The case was CWOF until 2/1/16.
  • Officer Allenberg filed charges against Nelson Rios of Springfield for his ongoing in-home practice of cropping the ears and docking the tails of puppies. A motion to dismiss is scheduled for 3/22/16.
  • Officer Branca filed charges against Alicia Cerci Sarmento & Ryan Guinta of Brockton for allowing their Pit Bull to suffer by failing to seek medical care for her numerous ailments, including an ulcerated eye. Motions are scheduled 2/2/16 for Cerci Sarmento, and 2/11/16 for Guinta.
  • Sergeant Sutton filed charges against Cobey Krupa of Huntington for subjecting his German Shepherd to unnecessary suffering when he attempted to kill the dog by gunshot while intoxicated. The dog bled profusely and screamed in pain until it was eventually put out of its misery (see below for outcome).
  • Sergeant Parkhurst filed charges against Cathy Richardson of Dracut for failing to provide proper food, water, shelter, and a sanitary environment for her 3 horses. The horses were surrendered to Nevins Farm. A jury trial is scheduled for 2/2/16.
  • Officer Weiand filed charges against Pamela Hoaglund of Plymouth, for suffocating to death her friend’s dog that she felt needed to be euthanized. Officer Weiand also filed charges against Paul Hayes of Plymouth, the owner of the dog, for failing to provide it with vet care and allowing it to suffer needlessly. Pretrial hearings were held 12/14/15 and 12/23/15 for Hoaglund and Hayes, respectively. Motions are scheduled for Hoaglund 2/12/16 and a jury trial for 3/28/16. Hayes’ default removal was granted and a pretrial hearing is scheduled for 2/12/16.
  • Officer Branca filed charges against siblings Mark and Margaret Stevenson of Sutton, for failing to provide vet care for their cat, allowing it to suffer for weeks with a severely fractured leg. Arraignment was 10/16/15.
  • Officer Branca filed charges against Barbara Finney of Randolph, the CEO and Chairman of the Board of Hilltop Humane Society, for failure to provide a sanitary environment for the 8 cats in her home. A pretrial hearing was held 7/27/15. The case was CWOF with no conditions.
  • Officer Weiand filed charges against Isabel Monteiro of New Bedford for allowing her dog to suffer with multiple medical issues while providing no veterinary care. A pretrial hearing is scheduled for 1/26/16
  • Officer Branca, with (then AWA, now Officer) Kelly, filed charges against Thomas Martin of West Roxbury for failing to provide care for his elderly, dying Pit Bull, leaving him immobile and whimpering in his own blood and waste for days. A pretrial hearing is scheduled for 1/27/16 (see adjudicated cases for outcome)
  • Officer Allenberg filed charges against Kathleen McHendry and Ronald Richard. The couple had over 100 domestic and wild animals living in poor health and squalor in their Springfield home, and over 250 deceased animals stored in refrigerators and freezers. They were arraigned 12/8/15.
  • Officer Branca filed charges against a 17yo Fitchburg male for physically abusing a cat his mother was pet sitting, resulting in severe burns, trauma, and the cat’s death. A pretrial hearing is scheduled for 1/29/16.
  • Officer Kelly filed charges against Ben Caldwell of Brockton for starving and keeping 2 beagles in unsanitary conditions. Arraignment is scheduled for 1/22/16.
  • Officer Kelly filed charges against Janice Ledan of Brockton for leaving her starving and severely matted dog uncared for in a flooded and unsanitary basement. Arraignment is scheduled for 1/22/16.
  • Sergeant Parkhurst filed charges against Susan Robson, owner of “Just Pups”, of Tyngsboro, for allowing a sick puppy she had sold and then had returned to her suffer for days with canine parvovirus, failing to provide veterinary care. Arraignment is scheduled for 1/27/16.

Adjudicated Cases

  • Capone (starved Cairn terriers) was CWOF (continued without a finding) for 1 year with supervised probation. Capone was ordered to continue in mental health counseling, remain drug and alcohol free, and not possess any dogs. The judge will consider returning the dogs to her in February 2016.
  • The Bleau (starving horses) trial on 3/11 resulted in 2 years’ probation at the end of which the case will be CWOF. The MSPCA was given inspection rights and Ms. Bleau prohibited from owning any animals.
  • Oller (3 severely matted Lhasas) motion to suppress 3/12 resulted in a year of probation at the end of which the case will be CWOF.
  • At the Warren (starved and feces-matted Maltese) disposition on 5/6, Judge McCormack CWOF with 2 years of supervised probation. Ms. Warren must  surrender all her remaining animals to the MSPCA (1 dog); if she then takes a course approved by probation and the MSPCA signs off on it, in 60 days the court will revisit Ms. Warren being allowed to possess an animal again. Ms. Warren must also remain employed and/or in school.
  • Cassignol (11 starving dogs in basement) pleaded guilty and was sentenced by Judge Lynn Brendemuehl to 1 year with 6 months to serve and a balance of 2 years suspended. He was also ordered not to own or possess any animals.
  • Duffy (cat being eaten alive by maggots) was found guilty at his bench trial and sentenced to 30 days committed by Judge Lynn Rooney.
  • Krupa (shot his German Shepherd while intoxicated) pleaded guilty to the cruelty to animals charge and was sentenced to 1 year of probation during which time he must surrender his FID card and not possess firearms or own any animals. Judge W. Michael Goggins also ordered an alcohol abuse evaluation, and that Mr. Krupa must seek mental health counseling.
  • Krafve (vet with injured & deceased livestock) counts 1, 2, 3 and 11 were CWOF with administrative probation until 8/29/16 by Judge Loconto. Krafve was ordered to pay a $90 victim witness fee and a $50 monthly fee, and to submit to unannounced inspections by the MSPCA and/or ACO. The other counts were dismissed.
  • Deblois (abandoned 2 dogs in parking lots) CWOF with probation until February 2016 (exact terms not yet known). Bird charges dismissed.
  • Walk (trapped and starved skunk to death) show-cause hearing held 10/6/14 and the case was continued until 10/6/15. On that date it was dismissed.
  • The Balestrieri (starving and injured horses) case pleaded out on 10/15. Counts 1-4, 6, and 8-10 were CWOF for 2 years (10/13/17) with probation.  Counts 5 and 7 were found guilty and Ms. Balestrieri’s 1 year sentence in the house of correction was suspended. She must remain drug and alcohol free and have no contact with animals. Count 11 was dismissed.
  • The Aguiar (Dachshunds in unsanitary breeding facility) case was CWOF for 18 months. The Aguiars are allowed to possess only their current cat and must submit to random inspections by the MSPCA LED.
  • Manuel (starving petting zoo animals) on 11/20 admitted to sufficient facts for 10 counts of animal cruelty as well as assault & battery on an officer and resisting arrest. Disappointingly, the case was merely CWOF for 1 year, during which time Manuel may not own any livestock.
  • 13yo East Brookfield male (stabbed family cat with steak knife) final report 12/31. The case was closed.
  • Martin (failure to provide care for his elderly, dying Pit Bull). At the pretrial hearing 1/27/16, the defendant plead the case out. The judge gave him a CWOF for 9 months. The ADA requested guilty probation, but the judge would not entertain the request that the defendant not own any animals for the probationary period because she felt the defendant ‘just made a mistake’.
  • Dupre (allowed her pregnant mare to become emaciated). The case was CWOF for 1 year on 2/1/16. Ms. Dupre will be on administrative probation, may not possess any animals during this time, and must complete 20 hours of community service.

Updates on Cases Initiated in Previous Years

  • Bates (stabbed his Husky mix to death) trial scheduled for 3/9/16.
  • Harding & Daphnis (five sick cats with no vet care). Daphnis remains in default. Harding pretrial hearing 12/1. Pretrial probation until 12/16/16.
  • Knight (diabetic toy poodle not provided treatment) status hearing 10/15.
  • 11yo West Springfield male (chronic physical abuse of pit bull puppy) In limine motion 12/18 rescheduled to 2/19/16.
  • Rossi (malnourished horses) failed to appear for trial 11/17 and a warrant was issued. She eventually turned herself in, but was not held by the court. Per the judge, Officer Weiand executed the seizure of Rossi’s horses by the court, and trial was rescheduled to 3/3/16.
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