LINDEN — On Oct. 6, at 10:13 p.m., officers responded to the 900 block of S. Wood Ave. on a report of animal cruelty. Officers spoke to a 22-year-old Linden man who told them that he took possession of four American Bulldog puppies from an acquaintance, Kimberly R. Matthews, age 26, of Linden.
He told the officers that Matthews gave him the 5 week-old puppies in an Igloo cooler. When he saw that the puppies lay motionless, Matthews told him that “they were probably just sleeping.” When he later went to touch them, he saw that they were cold and they were deceased.
The man told police that Matthews had an argument with her boyfriend, who breeds the dogs, over the telephone, and during the dispute, Matthews allegedly told the boyfriend that she was going to kill the puppies. At some later point, she allegedly removed the puppies from their cage and placed them into the cooler.
Officers then spoke to Matthews, who denied responsibility for the puppies’ death.
However, she was arrested on two contempt warrants, one out of Clark, and the other, a Middlesex County Sheriff’s Department warrant. She was later charged with four counts of animal cruelty and a disorderly persons offense. Each charge carries a fine of between $500 and $2,000, and up to 6 months in jail at the discretion of the judge. The Board of Health and the state ASPCA were notified of the incident.