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1640 Hanshaw Road, Ithaca, NY 14850

(607) 257-1822
Fax: (607) 257-5470

December 14, 2015

For immediate release
[Please contact Jim Bouderau at or 257-1822 ext. 227 for comment.]

SPCA pursues charges in Newfield Hoarding Case

On Friday December 11th, The SPCA of Tompkins County filed charges against Kevin Pierce and
Courtney Cotter in the Town of Newfield stemming from a hoarding investigation and subsequent seizure
of 28 animals on November 11th. As a result of a lengthy and ongoing investigation, the couple was
charged with 31 counts of violating NYS Ag and Markets Laws section 353: Overdriving, torturing and
injuring animals; failure to provide proper sustenance and 31 counts of violating section 356: Failure to
provide proper food and drink to impounded animal.
The couple will be arraigned at the Town of Newfield court on Tuesday December 15th at 4:00pm
The case began several months ago as a result of complaints from diligent neighbors and involve
individuals known to the SPCA for some time now. The same couple was prosecuted in 2010 when the
SPCA seized 98 animals living in similar conditions.
SPCA officers found 15 dogs, 4 rabbits, 8 cats, and 1 chinchilla, along with the remains of three
previously deceased animals, in a trailer living in complete squalor. The residence was covered in urine
and feces, and garbage and debris was strewn everywhere. The SPCA Humane Investigators, along with
veterinary support from Cornell University Shelter Medicine Program, had to wear respirators and
protective gear to be able to enter the premises. They were able to remove the animals from the dwelling
safely and collect evidence over the course of a few hours. The Tompkins County Sherriffs Office was
also on site for assistance.
The animals were taken to the SPCA for full medical evaluations and recovery. Many of them were
dehydrated, covered in feces, severely infested with fleas and ear mites, and most were not spayed or
neutered. Many have already tested positive for intestinal parasites. Necropsy is being performed to
determine the cause of death of the other two animals.
SPCA executive director Jim Bouderau says, This is a horrible situation, especially knowing that three
animals did not make it. It is amazing that 28 animals had survived living in these horrendous conditions.
While this is not the largest case we have ever seen, it was certainly one of the worst in terms of living
The majority of the animals seized have already found new homes and been adopted.
The mission of the SPCA of Tompkins County is to protect companion animals. We are a no-kill shelter
dedicated to preventing animal cruelty and overpopulation. We promote responsible pet stewardship by
providing education, counseling and training to nurture and enhance the human-animal bond.
The Dorothy and Roy Park Pet Adoption Center is open for adoptions every day except Wednesday

from Noon 5:00 PM and is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from Noon - 7:00 PM. The SPCA Annex
at The Shops at Ithaca Mall is open Monday through Saturday 11:00 AM. - 7:00 PM and
Sunday 11:00 AM - 6:00 PM. Donations can be made securely at, by calling 607-2571822 x227 or by emailing