An Asbury Park man accused of killing one of his girlfriend’s Toy Poodles and abandoning the other has been criminally charged, authorities said.
Nicholas C. Winter, 35, is charged with animal cruelty resulting in death and abandoning a domestic animal, according to Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey.
Shortly before 4 a.m. on June 4, Asbury Park police responded to a residence on Locust Drive and located the deceased dog, a 12-year-old male named “Bentley.” The victim’s other dog, a 14-year-old female named “Sophia,” was reported missing, but found in the area several hours later.
An investigation led by Detective Anthony Houlis of the Asbury Park Police Department and Lt. Michael Magliozzo of the Monmouth County SPCA determined that following an argument, Winter repeatedly texted his girlfriend threatening the welfare of her dogs while she was at work, Linskey said.
A necropsy later performed on Bentley determined that the dog had died due to blunt-force trauma, the prosecutor said.
Winter was arrested and charged on Tuesday, June 21 pending a detention hearing to take place in Monmouth County Superior Court.
“We take animal cruelty cases extremely seriously in Monmouth County,” Linskey said. “Taking the life of a defenseless animal as a means to emotionally traumatize its owner is reprehensible and tragic,”
The case has been assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutors Keri Schaefer and Sevan Biramian.
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