A Queens man has been charged with animal abuse after an emaciated dog was found dead in a cage and another with its ribs showing was in the house without food and water, the Nassau District Attorney's office said.
Mark Ballew, 29, said he had been going to an Austin Street house in Valley Stream every day since May 11 to care for Princess, the pit bull found alive, according to the complaint against him.
A detective for District Attorney Kathleen Rice went to the property July 25 with a search warrant and saw Princess inside a house that did not appear to have any ventilation and stank of feces and urine, court papers said. The dog, an unspayed gray and white female, was underweight, with her coat heavily soiled by feces and her nails overgrown, the detective said.
Shut inside a cage was a dead, brown and white female dog on a "significant pile of feces," the detective wrote: "Maggots had partially eaten away the floor facing [the] underside of the animal and no food or drink was found in the cage."
A Cornell University necropsy concluded the pit bull died of "starvation due to neglect," the detective said.
Ballew, of 47-46 188th St., was charged with two misdemeanor counts of failure to provide proper sustenance, which refers to food, water and veterinary care. He was arraigned Monday after surrendering to authorities and released on his own recognizance.
Ballew, who could not be reached for comment Tuesday night, is due back in court Oct. 1. His attorney also could not be reached.
A woman on Austin Street told the investigator that Ballew has been breeding and selling dogs from the house for years, court papers show.