A Toms River woman has been arrested and charged in the death of three dogs investigators say she was responsible for and abandoned inside of a vacant home in Lacey.

Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer and Lacey Township Police Chief Michael DiBella announced that Allissa DeStefano, 29, of Toms River, has been charged with three counts of Animal Cruelty in violation of N.J.S.A. 4:22-17c(2).

Lacey Police responded to a home on the evening of November 11 for a report that dogs had possibly been abandoned in the residence.

Upon arrival, officers determined that the house was indeed abandonded, and the remains of three dogs were discovered.

An investigation by Lacey Police Detectives and Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Detectives revealed that DeStefano was responsible for the care of the dogs and had abandonded them in the residence, which resulted in their deaths.

DeStefano was arrested without incident and processed at the Lacey Township Police Department.

She was released on a Summons pending a future court date.

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