SALEM (CBS) — Two people from New York were arraigned in Salem District Court Monday, one day after their French Bulldog was found dead in their car.
Brendan Bulfin, 38, and Courtney Casey, 28, were arrested and charged with cruelty to animals. They were released on $250 bail.
Transit Police were called to the Salem Commuter Rail Parking Garage around 6 p.m. Sunday after reports of an injured dog inside a car.
Officers found the lifeless body of the three-year-old dog, Nigil, in the front passenger seat, and confirmed he was dead after contacting the owners to have them open the car.
Transit Police said Bulfin and Casey left the dog in the car for over five hours on the 73-degree day.
Casey, a law student in Brighton, and Bulfin, her boyfriend, went to a carnival in Salem around 1 p.m. Sunday.
They bought the dog together several years ago, and Casey said Nigel was an emotional support dog.
The dog was left in her Jeep Wrangler with water and the windows cracked, and Casey claims she returned to the jeep at one point to check on the dog and he was fine.
“Casey said she had to leave him in the vehicle because he was unable to walk long distances and had some health issues,” said Essex County Assistant District Attorney Erin Bellavia.
Casey was visibly upset in court.
“Studies have shown on an average 75-degree day the temperature inside an enclosed vehicle will raise to 122 degrees in 1 hour,” Transit Police said in a statement.
Casey and Bulfin are due back in court for a pre-trial hearing on November 16. They have also been ordered not to have custody, control, or reside with any animals.