Cumberland County man facing animal cruelty charges after his dog is found dead outside his home

SILVER SPRING TOWNSHIP, Cumberland County — Police have charged a 37-year-old Silver Spring Township man with cruelty to animals after they say he caused his dog’s death by leaving it outside in the heat without proper shelter and water, according to a report by the Sentinel.

Eliezer Caraballo-Ocasio is charged with one felony count of aggravated cruelty to animals and misdemeanor counts of neglect of animals and cruelty to animals, according to the Sentinel.

The incident happened on July 2. Police responded to a home on the first block of Cottage Court for the report that a dog was lying outside in the heat for days. The caller believed the dog was dead, police say.

Officers at the scene discovered a 7-year-old pit pull lying dead in the tall grass near the home. The dog was found on its back with its paws in the air.

Caraballo-Ocasio told police he kept the dog outside in a fenced-in area, and that the animal had access to a shed for shelter, according to police. He allegedly said he fed the dog and gave it water once a day, and that he’d last been outside to see the dog around 3 p.m. the previous day, police said.

Police say the dog’s water dish was completely dry when officers checked it, and food from the dog’s food dish was spread across the floor of the shed. An air conditioner inside the shed was not running at the time police searched it.

Temperatures in the days around the dog’s death were above 90 degrees, according to police.

Officers also observed that Caraballo-Ocasio had begun digging a grave for the dog.

When asked what happened to the dog Carballo-Ocasio allegedly told police, “I don’t think I gave him enough water in this heat.”