MINEOLA, N.Y. – Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced that a Levittown man has been sentenced to four months in jail and five years’ probation for beating his dog with a shovel in December 2016.
The defendant also signed a 20-year ban on owning or harboring animals and consent to spot checks of his residence for compliance. The NCDA recommended a sentence of two years in prison.
Michael Gallagher, 57, pleaded guilty as charged on September 15 before Acting Supreme Court Justice Teresa Corrigan to Aggravated Cruelty to Animals (an E Felony).
“This defendant admitted to beating his dog, Bella, with a shovel and attempting to strangle her with a zip tie,” DA Singas said. “These types of inhumane actions against animals are heinous and unjustifiable, and should serve as a rallying cry for the state to finally enhance penalties for those convicted of felony animal abuse.”
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.
Assistant District Attorney Sarah Nadeau-Balducci of DA Singas’ County Court Trial Bureau is prosecuting the case. Gallagher is represented by Lawrence Carra, Esq.