The Asbury Park man who brutally killed one of his girlfriend's dogs -- Toy Poodles -- and left the other abandoned has now been criminally charged with committing this heinous act.

Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey announced Wednesday that 35-year-old Nicholas C. Winter is charged with third-degree Animal Cruelty Resulting in Death and Abandoning a Domestic Animal, a disorderly persons offense.

Winter beat the 12-year-old dog named Bentley which a necropsy confirmed died due to blunt force trauma.

Winter also abandoned the 14-year-old dog named Sophia, who was fortunately found later in the day back on June 4 when the animal abuse and crimes were committed on Locust Drive in Asbury Park.

Police were first on scene around 4:00 am on June 4 and through their investigation along with the Monmouth County SPCA, the team of investigators learned that after an argument, Winter texted his girlfriend several times threatening to do harm to her dogs while she was at work.

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Winter was later arrested and has been charged for injuring and abandoning the dogs, pending a detention hearing to take place in Monmouth County Superior Court.

Acting Prosecutor Linskey said that if Winter is convicted on the more serious charge against him, he would face up to five years in state prison.

“We take animal cruelty cases extremely seriously in Monmouth County. Taking the life of a defenseless animal as a means to emotionally traumatize its owner is reprehensible and tragic,” Acting Prosecutor Linskey said in a written statement. “We thank the joint efforts of the Asbury Park Police Department and the SPCA for their work on this case and their compassion for the canine victim in this case.”

The case has been assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutors Keri Schaefer and Sevan Biramian.

The Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office said that information about Winter’s legal representation was not immediately available.

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