- New Jersey, USA -
The Mahwah Police Department arrested 57-years-old RICHARD A. DUBARTON III (pictured).
DUBARTON is the owner and operator of Aranwood Kennels on 100 Stag Hill Road in Mahwah and the animal control officer of Essex County.
It all started on February 19, 2024, when a customer who was picking up their dog from Aranwood Kennels, heard a whimpering coming from the outside dumpster and alerted the police.
According to the press release by Mahwah Police, officers found a dog, a Dutch Shepherd, in a plastic bag who appeared to be malnourished and near death. When police advised DUBARTON of this, he claimed “someone must have dumped the dog there.”
The Voiceless Victim was taken to a nearby animal hospital.
The Mahwah Police Department’s Animal Humane officers launched an investigation and learned that for some reason, the dog’s original guardian had turned the dog over to the Irvington Police Department and that Irvington Police later gave the dog to DUBARTON, the animal control officer for Irvington.
Officials obtained and executed a search warrant at DUBARTON’s property that led to thirty-seven (37) dogs being taken away. The Voiceless Victims were all vetted and temporarily given to local rescues.
Police said that all the jurisdictions in the state that employ DUBARTON as an animal control officer were contacted and advised of what occurred at Aranwood Kennels.
On February 22, 2024, DUBARTON was charged with exposure of an animal to adverse conditions, failure to provide necessary care to an animal, failure to provide sanitary environment for an animal, failure to provide access to water to an animal, and failure to provide medical care to an animal resulting in serious bodily injury.
DUBARTON is scheduled to appear at Bergen County Superior Court on March 8, 2024.
The City of Plainfield wrote in a Facebook post: “The City of Plainfield and relevant departments are aware of the recent charges against an Aranwood Kennel employee. We're collaborating closely to prioritize our animals' welfare and are staying apprised of the next steps for Aranwood Kennels, including sourcing alternative solutions. Updates will be provided to the public as the situation progresses.”
On a separate note, according to an article by Daily Voice published on February 4, 2011, DUBARTON who at the time was a Fair Lawn Animal Control Officer, was fired “for posting a video on YouTube showing an albino cobra whose bite left a man close to death.”
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