Westchester County Police have arrested a Bronx veterinarian in connection with the along the side of the Hutchinson River Parkway in Harrison.
Andrew Manesis, 66, who lives on Oak Street in New Canaan, CT, was arrested Friday and charged with scheme to defraud in the second-degree, violation of environmental conservation law and two counts of petit larceny—all misdemeanors.
Transportation maintenance officials discovered 35 dead animals at the northbound entrance to the Hutchinson River Parkway from Westchester Avenue on April 5. They found 26 cats, eight dogs and a lizard in black garbage bags in dense woods near the highway.
Police believe Manesis, who works at the Throgs Neck Animal Hospital at 3800 East Tremont Avenue in the Bronx, was asked to properly dispose of the animals after they had died of natural causes, but instead drove to the location and dumped the animals on the side of the road.
“Dr. Manesis was entrusted by his clients to dispose of their pets’ remains in a proper and dignified manner,” Public Safety Commissioner George N. Longworth said. “Instead, it appears he simply pulled off to the side of a local highway and tossed the animal carcasses into the woods.”
Police used evidence from the scene to find the owners of two of the pets. Those pets provided a link to the Throggs Neck Animal Hospital and ultimately to Manesis, police say.
The arrest is the result of a joint investigation by the General Investigations Unit of the Westchester County Police and the Humane Law Enforcement Division of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Westchester.
County Police detectives are currently working to identify the remaining 33 animals found on the side of the parkway and find their owners. Anyone with information can contact detectives at 1-877-220-3560. The county police also accept tips by text and email at TIPS@WCCOPS.COM.
Manesis is due in Harrison Court on June 5.