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Riverhead woman sentenced to 30 days for starving dog

A Riverhead woman who police say let her dog starve in a cage earlier this year was sentenced to jail last Monday.

Claire Shands, 28, of Segal Avenue in Riverhead, pleaded guilty to torturing and injuring animals and was sentenced to 30 days in jail by Riverhead Town Justice Allen Smith.

In February, officials say a starving, one-year-old Rottweiler was found locked in a small crate in back of Ms. Shands’ home with no food or water. Officials said at the time that they believe the emaciated dog had not been fed in about two weeks.

Riverhead Town first caught wind of the situation through an anonymous call, according to Riverhead Code Enforcement Officer Nicole Buckner.

“My office received a phone call … about a dog dying in a crate in the rear yard,” Mr. Buckner said at the time. The dog was given food and nursed back to health at the North Fork Animal Welfare League shelter in Riverhead and was later adopted.

Claire Shands.

Top photo caption: The dog, named Louie, pictured in the crate he was found in. (Courtesy of NFAWL).