MINEOLA, N.Y. – Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced that a Levittown man pled guilty today to animal cruelty charges related to beating his dog with a shovel in Dec. 2016. The dog, named Bella, was so severely beaten that it had to be euthanized.
Michael Gallagher, 57, pleaded guilty before Acting Supreme Court Justice Teresa Corrigan to Aggravated Cruelty to Animals (an E Felony). The defendant is due back in court November 20 and the NCDA is recommending the maximum two-year jail sentence and a 20-year ban on owning an animal.
“My office takes crimes against animals extremely seriously because we know those who abuse animals often harm people too,” DA Singas said. “The depravity shown by this defendant toward an innocent and defenseless dog is sickening and I am grateful to our animal crimes prosecutors for holding him accountable.”
DA Singas said on Dec. 23, 2016 at approximately 3 p.m., the defendant placed his family dog, Bella, an 11-year-old female Shepherd mix, inside a black plastic bag and was observed by witnesses repeatedly striking the dog in the head with a metal shovel. The defendant was also observed placing a zip tie around the dog’s neck. Neighbors then called 911 and confronted the defendant who then stopped the beating.
Immediately following the incident, witnesses realized that Bella was still alive after seeing her head move slightly. At around that time, the defendant’s wife arrived home and immediately cut the zip tie from the dog’s neck and rushed her to East Village Green Animal Hospital. The veterinarian determined that the injuries, which included blood and tissue coming out of her head, were fatal, and euthanized the dog to prevent any further pain and suffering.
ADA Sarah Nadeau-Balducci of DA Singas’ County Court Trial Bureau is prosecuting the case. Gallagher is represented by Lawrence Carra, Esq.