DA: Hudson Valley Man Set Animals on Fire
A Hudson Valley man is accused of brutally killing animals by setting them on fire.
On Thursday in Orange County Court, 55-year-old Dee Jay Atkins of Newburgh was arraigned on an indictment charging him with two counts of aggravated cruelty to animals and bail jumping, all felonies.
It's alleged that on Aug. 6, 2017, Atkins doused a cat and a kitten, who were in a cage, with lighter fluid and set them on fire, killing them.
The cats did not belong to Atkins, officials say.
“Killing a caged animal by setting it on fire is an unfathomable act of wanton cruelty,” Orange County District Attorney David Hoovler said in a press release. “Anyone who would engage in such conduct deserves severe punishment. I commend the City of Newburgh Police Department for their investigation of this case. My office will continue to seek felony convictions and meaningful incarceration on cases involving aggravated cruelty to animals.”
Atkins is also accused of not appearing in Newburgh City Court in connection with the case. Bail was set at $25,000 cash or $50,000 bond.
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