CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A Petersburg fire captain has been charged in Chesterfield County with ill treatment of numerous animals and failure to bury/cremate dead animals. Some of the animals were found dead others are being described as severely malnourished and abused.
The man is Jeffery T. Ivey, 36, of the 9200 block of West Oak River Drive in Petersburg. The charges are both misdemeanors. He was charged Wednesday night.
The dogs were found in cages in the 11200 block of River Road. Police say four of the animals were dead. The other four were thin but alive. Ivey is the caretaker of the animals, which some neighbors describe as, skinny and sickly.
Fernanda Smith is a neighbor she calls the situation shocking.
"I can't see anybody being cruel to animals. I don't care what they are whether it's a dog, cat or whatever. I don't like it," said Smith.
Neighbors say Ivey moved from his River Road home days ago. One of Ivey's friends says, the animals got little food and water. He also says the pets had no bedding and slept on the dirt ground. Something that can be deadly especially in this cold weather.
"They should have insulated shelter if they have to be outside. They should be off the ground. They can get frostbite exposure. They can die -- really it's serious. Legally they have to have shelter. They have to have water. Not frozen ice but liquid they can drink," said Veterinarian Dr. Laura Drinkwine.
It's unclear at this point how long the animals had been outdoors or when those four died.
"They can become dehydrated. Every breathe is moisture from their lungs," said Dr. Drinkwine.
The surviving dogs are now in the custody of Animal Control. They've been seen by a veterinarian and are said to be doing well.