Dogs and Cats Severely Neglected, Eight Dead

Update 11/5/10:
Michael Malpass pleaded guilty to one count of cruelty to animals on September 9, 2010. He was sentenced on October 27, 2010 to three years of probation and was ordered to pay restitution of over $15,000.

(Clinton County, New York) On May 11, 2010, after a neighbor complained about unsanitary conditions and possible animal cruelty at the home of Michael Malpass, police seized 18 cats and three dogs suffering from severe neglect. Amidst accumulated feces and urine, they also found three dead animals in Malpass' house and three other dead animals in his car. Authorities condemned the house.

Two of the seized cats had to be euthanized because of their poor health, but the rest were surrendered for adoption. Malpass has been charged with nine counts of misdemeanor animal cruelty.

Here are news articles on the case:

Arrest made in city animal-cruelty case
Press-Republican, May 15, 2010

Adoptions under way in city cruelty case
Press-Republican, May 23, 2010

The recidivism rate among animal hoarders approaches 100%. While the criminal justice system may not be the ideal venue for accomplishing mental health interventions, the cyclical criminal suffering of so many animals along with the associated costs to the community demands the participation of the courts – where psychological treatment should be meaningfully pursued. The pathology of animal hoarding is not fully understood, and the method of treatment should be deliberately considered case by case. The Hoarding of Animals Research Consortium (HARC), among its other resources, has released a paper which seeks to inform therapists who find themselves addressing a case of animal hoarding.

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