Who, age What Where When Last Known Address

Lizandro Fernandez, 40

pet store employee beats 2 cats, kills 1 rabbit

Keansburg, NJ

Monmouth County

May 5, 2011  
Type of Crime Other Crimes #/Type of animal(s) involved Case Status Next Court Date /Courthouse
   

2 cats, 1 rabbit

Alleged

Keansburg municipal court, 6/2/11 8:30am

A borough man who works at an area pet store was charged with three counts of animal cruelty after punching a cat, killing a rabbit and getting into a fight with a second cat that clawed him so bad he needed 20 stitches to close the lacerations on his face, said the chief of police of the Monmouth County SPCA.

Lizandro Fernandez, 40, of Creek Road, is accused of “drop-punching” his girlfriend’s cat “King” during an altercation with the feline causing severe trauma to the animal, according to Victor "Buddy" Amato, chief law enforcement officer for the Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Fernandez is an employee at the PetSmart store on Route 35 in Holmdel, a store manager confirmed.

“PetSmart is committed to the well being of pets and is undertaking an investigation of these allegations. In the interim, the associate has been suspended,” said Mike Mullin, director of public affairs at PetSmart.

Fernandez’s girlfriend returned home to discover her cat staggering and disoriented. She immediately took the cat to Red Bank Animal Hospital where it was later determined the cat needed to be euthanized because of the extent of his injuries, Amato added.

Keansburg police and the Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals were notified of the incident and an investigation determined Fernandez was involved in an altercation with a second cat, “Cinnamon” that scratched his face so severely he needed 20 stiches to close the cuts on his face, Amato said.

It was also determined Fernandez was responsible for the death of the family rabbit, Amato said.

Fernandez is charged with three counts of animal cruelty and is expected in Keansburg municipal court at 8:30 a.m. on June 2, Amato said.

Update 5/19/11:  Another animal cruelty charge has been filed against Fernandez.

The additional charge stems from an altercation Fernandez had with a 10-week-old kitten that landed the animal in an animal hospital with internal bleeding and trauma, according to Victor "Buddy" Amato, chief law enforcement officer for the Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Fernandez, and his girlfriend, adopted the kitten during a pet adoption event at the PetSmart store on Route 35 in Holmdel where he is employed, but currently suspended, Amato explained.

Fernandez allegedly left a voice message at the store for the adoption coordinator saying “I hurt the kitten, and the kitten hurt me,” Amato said.

The adoption coordinator called Fernandez and was able to convince him to bring the kitten into the Banfield Animal Hospital at the store for evaluation, but the injuries were so severe the kitten was transferred to Lexington Animal Hospital in Clark, where the animal remains, Amato explained.

Fernandez’s girlfriend has not been implicated any of the animal abuse currently charged against him.

Fernandez is now charged with four counts of animal cruelty.

Reference:

The Daily Record Asbury Park Press