Roselle man charged in animal cruelty case Some rescued dogs brought to a West Milford shelter
Photos courtesy of Union County Prosecutor’s Office
Forty dogs were rescued from deplorable conditions in Roselle, some of which were brought to The Last Resort Animal Rescue in West Milford.
BY ERIKA NORTON WEST MILFORD — A Roselle man is charged with 30 animal cruelty offenses after 40 dogs living in severely unsanitary and inhumane living conditions were found in his home last month. Evelio J. Calderon, 40, is charged with two third-degree animal cruelty offenses, 14 counts of fourth-degree animal abuse by failing to provide care, and 15 counts of failure to provide necessary care to an animal, a disorderly persons offense. According to the Union County Prosecutor’s Office, the charges were filed after the dogs were medically evaluated by veterinarians. Officials searched Calderon’s home on Thompson Avenue in Roselle. Inside, investigators wearing full hazardous materials suits found the animals living in squalor, having been locked inside and forced to relieve themselves indoors for an indeterminate amount of time. The dogs ranged in age from puppies several days old to seniors, according to the Union County Prosecutor’s Office, varying widely in breed and size. Several of the dogs were treated on site for acute injuries that included malnutrition, joint problems and eye issues. Additional injuries to the dogs outlined in the charges against Calderon include visible worms, infected wounds, scars, scratches and overgrown nails with related lacerations. One of the dogs was missing an ear, while another was missing its tail. Members of the Cranford-based Traveling Paws Animal Rescue assisted in attending to the dogs, which were taken to four New Jersey shelters: The Last Resort Animal Rescue in West Milford, St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center in Madison, and the Edison and Montclair municipal animal shelters. The investigation was led by SPCA Investigator Tatiana Verenicin-Chan and assisted by Union County Assistant Prosecutor Patricia Cronin and Prosecutor’s Office Detective Vito Colacitti, the newly assigned leaders of the humane animal treatment subsection of the Prosecutor’s Office’s Special Prosecutions Unit. Anyone with information about this matter or similar incidents is urged to contact Cronin at 908-527-4169 or Colacitti at 908-527-4387. The Last Resort Animal RescueThe Last Resort is a nonprofit animal rescue dedicated to saving the lives of homeless, neglected, abandoned and abused animals. Their mission is to rescue, rehabilitate and find permanent homes for these animals. According to their website, Last Resort is a foster-based shelter and does not have a facility with regular operating hours. Dogs are available for meeting after one’s application is submitted, screened and approved. They can be found at thelastresortrescue.com, on Facebook and via email at email@example.com.