DOAG: Department of Agriculture Arrests Animal Importer for Cruelty

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 27, 2014

CONTACT: Raymond Connors

Raymond.Connors@ct.gov, 860-622-8554

 
 
 
Department of Agriculture Arrests Animal Importer for Cruelty

Georgia woman charged with 28 counts related to illegal pet adoption operation

 

(Hartford, CONN.)  Commissioner Steven K. Reviczky announced today that the Connecticut Department of Agriculture arrested 64-year-old Donna Lee Carswell of Grovetown, Georgia, in Madison on Saturday for animal cruelty and related charges.

 

After receiving complaints from consumers and the Rhode Island state veterinarian that Ms. Carswell was placing sick animals into adoptions with Connecticut and Rhode Island residents through her Nick of Time rescue business, the Department of Agriculture’s animal control unit conducted a sting operation with the assistance of Madison police and animal control officers. 

 

Undercover officers met with Carswell in a commuter parking lot under the auspices of purchasing a dog.  The Department of Agriculture seized ten cats and two dogs being transported in dirty enclosures covered with feces and urine.  The cats exhibited symptoms of respiratory distress.  All of the animals were taken immediately to an area veterinarian for examination.  Two cats had to be euthanized because of illness. 

 

“The Department of Agriculture has no tolerance for cruelty to animals or importation of sick animals into Connecticut,” said Commissioner Reviczky.  “We take these issues very seriously and will continue to pursue prosecution of offenders under state law.  It is our goal to eradicate the needless suffering of innocent pets, as well as the severe emotional and financial hardship their new families inevitably face after unknowingly adopting seriously ill animals.”

 

The charges against Ms. Carswell include 12 counts of cruelty to animals, 12 counts of failing to have official interstate animal health certificates, failure to register as an animal importer, failure to notify the Department of Agriculture of an animal adoption event, operating a pet shop without a license, and failure to have animals examined by a veterinarian prior to adoption. 

 

She was released on a promise to appear and is scheduled to be in New Haven Superior Court on February 4, 2014. 

 

www.CTGrown.gov               www.ct.gov/doag

 

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