Dec. 1, 2016 By Hannah Wulkan
A Jackson Heights woman was indicted on felony animal cruelty charges and may face up to eight years in jail if convicted, announced District Attorney Richard Brown today.
Elizabeth Grant of 25-44 82nd Street in Jackson Heights, will head to court in January for allegedly abusing 55 cats, 12 dogs and two turtles. The 48-year-old woman was indicted on four counts of felony aggravated cruelty to animals, 66 counts of overdriving, torturing or injuring an animal and 66 counts of failure to provide proper food and drink to an impounded animal.
“The defendant is accused of permitting her numerous pets to live in deplorable conditions. The home’s floor and furnishings were allegedly covered in feces, fur and urine. Rescue workers stepping inside the dwelling, were overwhelmed by the smell of ammonia and had to wear respirators to breathe, as well as protective clothing. No person or animal should live in such wretched conditions,” Brown said in a statement.
Grant will return to court and face the charges on January 10, and if convicted could face two years for each of the four felony charges, according to Brown.
According to the charges, a police officer from the 115th Precinct went to visit Grant’s mother at her Jackson Heights home on January 6, and though there was no answer when she knocked, she said the door was open and she could see numerous animals inside in filthy conditions.
The officer returned on January 28 with the ASPCA, and Grant’s mother answered the door. The officer said she saw feces, fur, urine and flies throughout the entire first floor of the house, and saw that the ceiling was peeling and rotting and there was trash strewn everywhere.
She said that she saw many animals missing patches of fur and with their eyes crusted closed, and saw one cat that appeared not to be able to walk.
Upon executing a search warrant later that day, officers rescued the 69 animals from the house and members of the ASPCA examined the 67 cats and dogs, finding that many had dental diseases, ear mites and respiratory infections, as well as pain and discomfort from a host of other ailments.
One dog named Dorothy was so diseased that she had to be put down. When she was taken from the house she was allegedly vomiting and had diarrhea related to chronic kidney and liver disease. A large part of her coat was matted with feces and she had severe dental disease and a chronic illness associated with her digestive system.
Other animals found in especially bad condition included:
-A dog named Bond was allegedly dehydrated and weak. His fur had a foul stench and was matted with feces and urine. Bond showed signs he was in pain with every movement and his skin was inflamed. His overgrown claws were caked with fecal matter that caused inflammation of his paws and made it painful to walk. He also had an untreated kidney infection, severe dental disease and many of his teeth had rotted out.
-A cat named Augustus was allegedly emaciated from prolonged lack of food. Augustus also had a severe dental disease, an ear mite infection in both ears and suffered with blood-filled ear flaps.
-A dog named Ewok had an unpleasant stench coming from his fur and a swollen eyelid gland. The dog’s urethra protruded from the end of his penis and he experienced discomfort from both an ocular and ear disease.
-A cat named Gracie allegedly had cerebellar hypoplasia, a problem with balance due to a virus infection as well as scarring from an untreated ear mite infection.
Only two animals, cats named Howie and Kobe, did not show any significant health abnormalities when examined.