NEW YORK - Authorities on Long Island are looking for whoever horrifically abused and then abandoned a dog in Nassau County earlier this month.
A passerby found the dog, a male boxer mix, in an open yard on Princeton Street in Valley Stream on Jan. 10 and brought him to a veterinary clinic, which then referred the case to the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter, according to the Nassau County District Attorney's Office.
The dog was severely emaciated, likely from a lack of food, and had several burn marks on his head, likely from cigarettes, the shelter said.
Shelter staff named the dog Chester.
"This innocent animal suffered needlessly, and we need to get justice for Chester," District Attorney Madeleine Singas said in a statement. "I'm grateful to the Nassau County SPCA for offering this $5,000 reward to help us find and prosecute whoever starved and burned this poor dog."
Chester is now in the care of a foster home, the DA's office said.
The yard where Chester was found is close to the Nassau-Queens border as well as the Cross Island Parkway, Merrick Road, and Sunrise Parkway. That could suggest that the person who abandoned the dog came by car from somewhere potentially far away, authorities said.
The Nassau County SPCA is offering a $5,000 reward to someone who has information that leads to the arrest and conviction of whoever did this to Chester.
"Burning an animal with cigarettes and starving it to the point of emaciation is a clear sign of neglect and abuse," Nassau County SPCA President Gary Rogers said.
If you have any information, you can call either the Nassau County DA's tip line at 516-571-7755 or the Nassau SPCA's Animal Abuse hotline at 516-843-7722.