City’s first ‘animal hoarders’ are indicted

A Williamsburg couple are the first people indicted under New York’s new animal-hoarding law — and the two are now facing one to two years in prison for keeping over 100 animals in a loft in Williamsburg.

Kings County District Attorney Charles Hynes said that Michael Fiore, 51, and his wife Hazel Fiore, 57, had the cats and kittens stuffed into a filthy, feces-filled third floor space on Metropolitan Avenue between Manhattan and Graham avenues that they had rented for their silk screening business.

Their hoarding wasn’t discovered until last July when five of the cats — two of which were blind — fell through the urine-soaked and rotting floorboards into the hallway below, prosecutors said.

The ASPCA then launched an investigation and entered the loft, finding a fetid feline prison: a stifling, garbage and feces-strewn loft filled with flee-infested cats suffering from malnutrition and a host of other ailments.

Many of the cats were left blind from eye infections, while others were dehydrated, emaciated and had respiratory problems.

But they were the lucky ones: several decaying cat carcasses were found throughout the loft, officials said.

Michael Fiore — who admitted to not properly caring for the cats — was charged with aggravated cruelty to animals and the overdriving, torturing and injuring of animals. If convicted, he faces two years in prison.

His wife Hazel was charged with a misdemeanor count of overdriving, torturing and injuring of animals and faces one year in jail if convicted, prosecutors said.

Ex-cop admits to murder

An unhinged ex-Brooklyn South-narcotics cop drummed out of the NYPD for supplying his informants with drugs is facing up to 40 years in prison now that he’s admitted to killing his longtime girlfriend.

During a hearing in Brooklyn criminal court on Jan. 20, Jerry Bowens agreed to the plea deal offered by Kings County District Attorney Charles Hynes for the slaying of girlfriend Catherine D’Onofrio, 28, and the wounding of D’Onofrio’s friend Melissa Simmons during the crazed March, 2009, clash in Greenpoint.

Presiding Judge Alan Marrus found the deal “a just resolution to this case.”

“[The sentence] is beyond his life expectancy,” he said during the Thursday hearing.

On the night of the murder, Bowens had called D’Onofrio and asked her for a lift since his car wasn’t working.

D’Onofrio picked him up and took him to Simmons’s Greenpoint apartment so he could use the bathroom.

But once there, prosecutors charge that Bowens pulled a gun, dragged D’Onofrio into the bathroom and shot his girlfriend in the head, killing her. He then opened fire on Simmons, leaving her with a grazed arm.

Bowens fled in D’Onofrio’s car and was apprehended on Staten Island the next morning. At the time of his arrest, he was preparing to surrender to authorities and, fearing retribution by the police, had reached out to several media outlets to cover it.

At the time of the slaying, Bowens had already pled guilty to drug possession and sale charges stemming from an NYPD Internal Affairs investigation about how he and partner Michael Arenella would routinely take cash and narcotics off of drug suspects they had busted and give it to their informants “as a reward.”

Both cops were busted in February, 2008, after one of their informants — who was working with police — took them to an undercover cop posing as a drug dealer.

The two arrested the would-be drug dealer, took $40 off of him and gave it to the informant, as well as some other drugs they had seized, police said.

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