Two Marlton residents have been charged with endangering the welfare of a child and animal cruelty after Evesham police responded to a call on the 600 block of Main Street, where they found a juvenile living alone and multiple dogs that appeared sick or malnourished.
Rebecca Halbach, 35, and Brandon Leconey, 32, are in custody until a detention hearing in Burlington County Superior Court. A witness told police on Aug. 28 that multiple dogs at the home appeared sick and malnourished. Officers also found living and dead dogs in the residence and came upon a juvenile living alone in what they described as unsanitary conditions. He was removed from the home and is in the care of the New Jersey Division of Child Protection and Permanency while it investigates his case.
Officers discovered 14 dogs living in the Main Street residence, along with numerous cats and rabbits. They also found more than 30 deceased dogs. Some of the living animals appeaared in extremely poor health and were taken to the Mount Laurel Animal Hospital, police said. One was euthanized.
Police are investigating the case with the Burlington County Prosecutor’s office. It is believed about 100 dogs died in the home, some of which were buried on the property. A search warrant enabled law enforcement to search the property and recover evidence. The investigation is ongoing, and additional animal cruelty charges may be filed once the actual number of animals in the home can be determined.
The Evesham police department’s three certified Humane Law Enforcement Officers – who respond to and investigate animal cruelty cases – also participated in the investigation.
Police are asking anyone with information on the case – including anyone who might have provided some of the animals in the home – to contact the department at (856) 983-1116 or the confidential tip line at (856) 983-4699. Information can be emailed to email@example.com. Anonymous tips can also be submitted by texting ETPDTIP to 847411.