Arrest made in connection to dog found abandoned, suffering from frostbite in Branford

Animals and Wildlife

BRANFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — An arrest has been made in connection to a dog found abandoned in Branford last month suffering from frostbite.

Just over a month ago, on a cold January morning, Lincoln, a white pit bull was found abandoned in Branford.

According to Laura Burban, animal control officer for the Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter, he was dropped off near the Branford Community House around 11:30 p.m. Saturday night but wasn’t found until 7 a.m. Sunday by a passing jogger.

Veterinarians discovered Lincoln was not only suffering from frostbite on his paws, but he was underweight with mange, overgrown toenails and pressure sores from being crated.

“The dog appeared thin, cold and was extremely frightened,” Burban said. “The dog displayed with both aggressive and fearful behaviors to arriving animal control officers.”

For the past month, animal control officers have been following leads, trying to find the person who did this.

Finally, Tuesday night, 22-year-old Bless Rivera 22, of New Haven, turned himself to Branford police.

“Through video evidence, community members, and with the media’s help, getting so much information out there,” Burban said. “He showed up to an attorney’s office and stated that he wanted to confess to the incident and that’s how we found out it was definitely the person we were investigating.”

Rivera will be charged with animal cruelty.

RELATED: Dog found abandoned, suffering from frostbite in Branford finds forever home

Today, Lincoln looks much better, his skin is healing and he was just adopted.

If you need help with food or medical care for your pet, don’t hesitate to reach out to one of the local animal shelters; they will guide you to the right resources.  If you decide you can’t take care of your pet anymore, there is no shame or judgment in surrendering them.

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