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Boston Man Charged After Decomposing Dog Found in Apartment

A Boston man has been charged with animal cruelty after police found a decomposing dog in his Chelsea apartment on Oct. 27, as per reporting by WCVB-5.

According to Suffolk District Attorney Kevin Hayden, neighbors filed a complaint with the building’s maintenance manager regarding an unpleasant odor emanating from the man’s apartment. Authorities identified the dog owner to be 28-year-old Massi Ennis.

Police visited the apartment to conduct a wellness check and determine the cause of the smell after concerned neighbors reported not seeing the man around in several days. That’s when the manager, together with the police, made the gruesome discovery.

Discovery of dead dog in Boston residence  

Around 3 p.m. on Oct. 27, Brian Youngsman — the building’s maintenance manager — went to investigate the strong, nauseating smell Ennis’ neighbors were complaining about. As such, Youngsman headed down to the basement apartment Ennis called home.

One neighbor, Mirna Ramos, said the stench was so awful that she had to seal her door with tape to prevent it from making its way into her apartment.

When Youngsman arrived at Ennis’ door, he tried knocking, hoping someone would answer. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen.

“Knocked on the door, no answer. Knocked again. Called the office and he said open it up and yell ‘Maintenance!’” Youngsman narrated. He continued, “I went in, and it was just horrible, horrible conditions.”

The apartment was left in a terrible state. What’s more, the decomposing body of the man’s dog was in the living room. 

A shocked Youngsman couldn’t help but express his frustrations at the tenant’s inhumane actions. “I love animals; that’s why it kind of hit home. You’ve got an animal that’s like your best friend; it’s like a family member.” He further commented, “They need to put him in the dog house, and put him through what that poor animal went through.”

Youngsman immediately called the police, who rushed to the residence located at 185 Washington Avenue. When the responding officers arrived, they saw what looked like feces scattered all over the main entrance all the way into the living room, as well as into the kitchen. The living room’s couch was covered in feces, too.

They also noticed the canine’s crate had empty water and food bowls. Upon close inspection of the decomposing dog, police saw gnats and maggots around their mouth. The insects are a sign that the dog was in an advanced stage of decomposition.

Boston man placed in custody, appears in court

Police noted that the suspect’s mailbox was full, confirming he had not been around for quite a while. One neighbor told the authorities she hadn’t seen Ennis for nearly a week. She further mentioned that she’d frequently hear him yell at the pooch. According to the neighbor, the dog whimpered a lot as a result. 

Police couldn’t find Ennis at first, but they were soon able to trace down and arrest him. 

When police placed Ennis in custody on Oct. 30, he claimed to have subleased his apartment to a work colleague he met nearly a year prior. In doing so, Ennis attempted to shift blame for the dog’s death to the “new tenant.” 

Officials from the District Attorney’s office say police couldn’t validate this claim, as no person matched the name and description that Ennis submitted.   

“This is another tragic case of a pet suffering because its owner did not take some simple, humane steps like bringing the dog to a local shelter or a rescue organization,” Hayden commented. “Pets bring many joys, but they also bring many responsibilities,” he continued. Hayden further lamented that “the lack of responsibility here is heartbreaking.”

Ennis was arraigned in Chelsea District Court on Nov. 3 on animal cruelty charges. He was held on $500 bail. The judge ordered that he neither keep a dog nor have any contact with dogs or any other domesticated animal.

He is set to appear in court again for trial on Dec. 23.   

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