Otsego County woman arrested on animal cruelty charges

Nine dogs found, five dead in garbage bags

LAURENS, NY (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) — Otsego County Sheriffs arrested a Laurens woman on Wednesday, March 13, on animal cruelty charges after sheriffs found several dead or starving dogs on a property in the town.

Sheriffs — along with the Susquehanna SPCA in Cooperstown — were called to a house in the Town of Laurens on Monday, February 19, to investigate reports of dead and emaciated dogs at the residence. Through an initial investigation, a search warrant was executed that day as well.

According to sheriffs, they arrived to find several dogs either dead or abandoned. According to sheriffs, five of the dogs were found dead, wrapped in blanked and placed in garbage bags. Five dogs were found abandoned in a trailer and in various states of starvation.

The four dogs found alive were transported to the Susquehanna SPCA for medical evaulation. The five that did not survive were sent to Cornell University in Ithaca for autopsies and forensic examinations. The autopsies found that the deceased dogs had starved to death and were partially cannibalized by the dogs that were still alive.

On Wednesday, March 13, sheriffs developed information that the suspect — 35-year-old Ashley Williams of Laurens — was at a residence in the City of Oneonta. Otsego County Probation Officers — along with Oneonta Police — were able to take Williams in without incident. Williams was then taken in for processing and lodged in the Otsego County Correctional Facility in Cooperstown.

Williams is currently being charged with:

  • Four counts of Aggravated Cruelty to Animals, a felony,
  • Nine counts of Abandonment of Animals, a misdemeanor,
  • Nine counts of Failure to Provide Sustenance to Animals, a misdemeanor.

Otsego County Sheriffs say additional charges against Williams are pending.

According to sheriffs, the rescued dogs are on the road to recovery at the Susquehanna SPCA in Cooperstown. If you wish to donate to help in the rehabilitation of the rescued dogs, you may donate to the Susquehanna SPCA at this link.

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