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Hempstead woman gets jail for abandoning badly injured dog

Tamara Copeland, 57, of Hempstead, was sentenced to

Tamara Copeland, 57, of Hempstead, was sentenced to six months in jail for abandoning a dog. Credit: NCDA

A Hempstead woman was sentenced Monday to six months in jail and a 10-year ban prohibiting her from owning any animals for abandoning an injured dog outside of a veterinary clinic nearly two years ago.

According to a news release from Nassau District Attorney Madeline Singas’ office, Tamara Copeland, 58, pleaded guilty on May 22 before District Court Judge Norman St. George to one count of abandonment of animals.

“This defendant abandoned a helpless dog suffering from horrible injuries that appeared to be the result of long-term abuse and neglect,” Singas said in the release. “The people of Nassau County have big hearts and tips from the public helped us solve this tragic case. Thanks to skilled veterinarians and our Animal Crimes investigators and prosecutors, Niño recovered from his injuries to live out his final days in a loving home.”

Singas said that at about 9 a.m. on Oct. 13, 2015, an employee of a veterinary clinic on Main Street in Hempstead found a poodle-mix dog with open wounds and bloody bandages laying on a small bed right outside the entryway.

The clinic contacted Town of Hempstead Animal Control, which took the dog to the town animal shelter where it received medical care for such injuries as broken ribs, bacterial infections and skin lesions. The case was immediately referred to the district attorney’s office.

Singas said video from that morning secured by her office that was distributed to the media led to a tip that identified Copeland.

Singas said the dog had an implanted identification chip and was owned by a Uniondale woman and went missing from her yard more than three years ago.

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