SELDEN, N.Y. (WPIX)—A Selden woman is facing animal cruelty charges after being accused of killing more than 20 dogs and burying them in her backyard, Suffolk County SPCA officials said Monday.
According to Sharon McDonough's son, his mother routinely went on "power trips" by purchasing a dog and would then ultimately decide to kill the animal and add it to the mass graveyard behind her home.
Investigators on Saturday night unearthed more than a dozen animal remains from McDonough's backyard. According to reports, her seven children knew what was going on but couldn't do anything to stop her.
A local rescue group alerted authorities about the deplorable conditions of the home when they visited last Thursday.
The charges against McDonough - who is a widow - could evolve into felony counts if authorities determine the animals were intentionally killed. She has pleaded not guilty and is due back in court Tuesday in Central Islip.
SPCA official Roy Gross said five dogs were found in bad shape, living in small cages without food or water at her home. In addition, a cat, also found malnourished, was rescued.
The rescued dogs are a shepherd mix, a beagle mix, and Italian greyhound, a cocker spaniel mix and a pug. So far, the greyhound has been adopted, however homes for the other abused animals are still being sought.