GREENFIELD — Two people living in a Greenfield apartment abused and neglected multiple dogs, some to the point of death, officials said. They’ve both been charged with numerous animal cruelty crimes.
Neal W. Tracy, 42, and Erica R. Massey, 43, both living in the 5200 block of West U.S. 40, Greenfield, are each facing 12 different Class A Misdemeanor cruelty to an animal charges while Massey is also facing a Level 6 felony count of battery against a public safety official.
Class A misdemeanors carry a maximum penalty of up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $5,00 while Level 6 felonies carry a sentence of six months to two-and-a-half years.
The case against the two was officially opened in Hancock County Superior Court 2, Friday, July 29.
According to a probable cause affidavit, on Monday, July 25 an officer from Greenfield Hancock Animal Management went to the Greenfield apartment complex after receiving a call about a dog outside of an apartment who was neglected and sick.
When the officer arrived, she found the dog in “grave” condition, the affidavit said. The officer found the owners of the animal, Tracy and Massey, who told the officer they didn’t know the dog was outside, the report said.
The officer took the dog and placed it in an animal care truck to take it to the facility, but Tracy came and took the dog, went back into the apartment and shut the door, officials said in the report. Officials from the Sheriff’s Department were called and a warrant was presented to take any live or deceased dogs from the property, the report said.
According to the affidavit, when the officials went inside, Massey began to scream and picked up one of the dogs in the apartment. She then threw the dog at a Sheriff’s deputy, causing the dog to hit the official in the chest and fall to the ground, the report stated.
Officials ended up taking 12 dogs in all, who officials said in the report had to be immediately bathed in Dawn soap due to the number of fleas on the animals, officials said. All the dogs were dirty and covered in urine and feces with dried fecal matter on their paws, the officials noted.
The animals had to be given special pills that kill the fleas within 30 minutes due to the number of fleas on their bodies from “head to tail,” officials noted in the report. Many of the dogs, which were a terrier mix, had ear infections and overgrown nails while others had hair loss and irritated skin, the report said.
Tracy and Massey are both scheduled to make an initial appearance in Hancock County Superior Court 2, Thursday, Aug. 18. Failure to appear, court documents state, will result in a warrant for the defendants’ arrest.