N.J. couple accused of cruelty in the deaths of 4 German Shepherd puppies

In Monmouth County, New Jersey, a couple have been accused of animal cruelty in the deaths of four German Shepherd puppies because of neglect.

According to a press release, Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni, stated Daniel McDonald, 25, and Tricia Jacoma, 24, face four charges of third degree animal cruelty. The puppies were found dead on a property in Howell where the couple had been living.  Remains of two of the deceased puppies were discovered in a fire pit on the property last month.

The Howell Police Department and the Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Law Enforcement division also found the remains of two more puppies buried on the property.

The puppies had been stolen from a farm in Somerset County when they were three-weeks old. McDonald and Jacoma had been staying at the farm at the time the puppies went missing. Investigators learned the puppies had been in distress and had been struggling to breathe prior to their deaths. The couple allegedly did not seek medical attention for the puppies because of the costs.

Necropsy results found two of the puppies suffered from parasites, were severely emaciated with “no indications of recent nutritional ingestion.”

In addition to the animal cruelty charges, the couple have also been charged with failing to provide for the puppies’ necessary care, multiple counts of third degree receiving stolen property and in the possession of stolen puppies in Monmouth County. McDonald was further charged with hindering apprehension of oneself, disorderly conduct offenses for disposing of the deceased puppies’ bodies and in possession of a stolen generator and front end loader.

McDonald is currently in jail; as of June 16, Jaccoma has been listed as a fugitive. If convicted of second degree charges, McDonald could face a maximum of a decade in jail.

Rest in peace little ones. You never got to live your lives.

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