The Brick Township man whose Mantoloking Road home was found to contain 157 cats and three dogs following a call to authorities May 4 has been charged with animal cruelty following the results of an investigation and veterinary reports.
Prosecutors announced Friday morning that Jeffrey Finlay, 54, of Brick, was charged with the crime June 11 and surrendered to authorities June 14. He remains in the Ocean County Jail pending a detention hearing.
Officers from a slew of agencies, including a HAZMAT team, responded to the small home on Mantoloking Road in May, where they discovered approximately 157 cats and three dogs living at the residence. Over the course of 24 hours, the animals were removed from the residence and transferred for treatment and evaluation to the Northern and Southern Ocean County Animal facilities, which are under the direction of the Ocean County Health Department. Finlay was initially charged with failure to provide care for a living animal or creature.
On June 5, the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office and Brick Township Police Department received the final veterinary reports from the Ocean County Health Department regarding the animals that were removed from the residence. The report determined that 25 cats needed to be euthanized and 4 cats suffered serious bodily injury – “all as a result of Finlay’s failure to provide necessary care for the animals,” the prosecutor’s office said in a statement.
Based upon the report’s findings, Finlay was charged on June 11, 2023 with animal cruelty and a warrant was issued for his arrest. On June 14, 2023, Finlay surrendered himself to Brick Township Police Headquarters. He was processed and transported to the Ocean County Jail, where he is presently lodged pending a detention hearing.