Bohemia, NY: Shih Tzu & other animals seized in raid on Long Island
BOHEMIA, N.Y. (AP) _ A Long Island man was charged with cruelty to
animals Friday after authorities discovered dozens of animals _ including 22 dogs living in filth at his home, police said.
Suffolk County police said Anthony Balsamo, 45, was arrested at his
Ocean Avenue residence, where animals were kept in crates inside the house and in stalls throughout the property.
The animals were found Friday when firefighters responded to the
ranch-style home to investigate reports of a fire.
Inside the house, firefighters were overpowered by the stench of
animal waste, investigators said. A police search revealed dozens of dogs covered in feces and urine, stuffed into makeshift cages in the living room and den.
Firefighters notified police, who then called the Suffolk County
Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
"I can only describe it as a house of horrors for these animals,"
said Roy Gross, chief of department for the Suffolk SPCA, who investigated the property.
The corpse of a cat and what appeared to be the skull of another were inside a cage in the basement, and dead tarantulas were found in a small cage, Gross said.
On the outdoor property, investigators found scores of other animals, including horses, llamas, emus, goats and pigs, police said.
Police said the dogs were taken to a nearby shelter. The SPCA was to
take custody of the other animals, and planned to send a veterinarian to the property Saturday, Gross said.
Balsamo was released on bail, police said. A phone listing for
Balsamo could not be found.
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