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Pair Arrested After Child Found Living in N.J. House with 30 Dead Dogs


Two people have been accused of animal cruelty and endangering a child following the discovery of over 30 deceased dogs at a residence in southern New Jersey this week.

Investigators suspect that around 100 dogs lost their lives on the premises. On Monday, law enforcement found both deceased and living dogs within the home, along with several cats and rabbits, as stated by the Evesham Police Department.

Of the living dogs, nine were transported to an animal hospital for treatment, with several in a state of severe malnourishment and ill health, according to authorities. One of these dogs had to be euthanized.

Rebecca Halbach, aged 35, and Brandon Leconey, aged 32, were apprehended on Monday in Evesham, a suburb of Philadelphia. The police visited their residence after a representative of an animal rescue group based in North Carolina, which had provided funds for the care of certain dogs, reported witnessing numerous sick and undernourished dogs on the property.

A 9-year-old boy residing in the house was removed due to the “unhealthy conditions” and handed over to child welfare officials. It remains unclear if the child had any relation to Halbach or Leconey.

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Upon investigators’ arrival, they had to ventilate the residence by opening doors and windows before it was deemed safe for their entry.

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Leconey is currently detained in the Burlington County Jail, while Halbach is under evaluation at a hospital for an undisclosed medical condition.

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