Owner of abandoned pit bull charged with animal cruelty

New London — The owner of a pit bull found last week tied behind a Blinman Street house with no water or food was charged Friday with animal cruelty.

Police Capt. Brian Wright said that Marissa Clarke, 30, of 70 Coit St. was also charged with failure to vaccinate and failure to license a dog.

Wright said police, upon receiving a complaint, found the dog — who Clarke said was named Matisse — last Wednesday tied behind 94 Blinman St.

Wright said the 10-year-old dog had a moderate skin and right eye infection. According to New London Animal Control’s Facebook page, Matisse had numerous open wounds on his body, bacterial infections, yeast infections and a missing eye.

Wright said Matisse was immediately taken to the New London Animal Hospital for treatment and is now doing better.

Clarke reported her dog missing on Friday, two days after he was found on Blinman Street, police said in a press release. Clarke said she had tied the dog up in front of a convenience store on Bank Street on Sept. 3 and that he had been missing since.

Wright said Clarke claimed that she did not abandon the dog but also told police that she was unable to afford proper care for the dog.

Clarke signed over custody of Matisse to New London Animal Control, Wright said.

The dog is now considered evidence, but Wright said he is working with the court so that Matisse may be released to an animal rescue group.

Clarke was issued a criminal summons and is expected to appear in New London Superior Court on Sept. 23.


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