STATEN ISLAND, NY — Law enforcement officers are prosecuting an animal cruelty charge against a man in connection with a raid last week in Tompkinsville that removed two dozen Huskies from what officials described as appalling living conditions.
Victor Quinteros, 54, was arrested Friday by New York City Sheriff deputies conducting the operation along with ASPCA workers in a fenced area along the 100 block of Van Duzer Street. Officials said the property was shielded by a tarpaulin and barbed wire.
The highest charge against Quinteros is felony aggravated cruelty to animals, in addition to 24 counts of felony neglect of confiscated animals and 24 counts of improper shelter for dogs, according to a written statement Sunday from the NYPD deputy commissioner of public information’s office.
Husky Dogs Removed by NYC Sheriff’s Deputies and the ASPCA on Staten Island in Animal Abuse Investigation
Authorities found 16 adult dogs and eight puppies on the property on Friday. With temperatures over 85 degrees that day, most dogs were found in trailers covered in feces and urine. A puppy was found dead and an adult was seriously injured.
A lawyer for Quinteros did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sunday.
PRELIMINARY ATTACK ON THE LOCATION
Weeks prior to the raid, Quinteros allegedly assaulted a person in the same location, an NYPD spokesman said Sunday.
A source familiar with that arrest said he was accused of punching a 40-year-old woman in the face after suspecting her of peeking into the property.
In that case, the defendant is charged with assault and second-degree intimidation, according to court records. He was arraigned on July 19 and released on his own admission. The judge ordered a temporary protection order on behalf of the victim. He was due to return to court on August 31.
A formal complaint was received Thursday by the New York City sheriff’s office, leading to an investigation of the property and ultimately a search warrant with the assistance of the Richmond County District Attorney’s Office, officials said earlier.
Other than last week’s arrests, Quinteros has no other priors in New York City, the spokesman said.
In an earlier statement, Sheriff Anthony Miranda said: “Cruelty to animals is a very serious issue in this case. the sheriff [Office] was pleased to be able to work with the District Attorney’s office to take corrective action to save the animals and hold the person responsible for the abuses that have been taking place there for quite some time.”