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Man, woman facing charges after 38 dogs, 11 dead, removed from Hampstead home

Man, woman facing charges after 38 dogs, 11 dead, removed from Hampstead home
Dozens of dogs were found abandoned in this house at 4302 Black Rock Road in Hampstead. Many of them were found dead. (Barbara Haddock Taylor/Baltimore Sun)

Two Hampstead residents were arrested Saturday on charges including animal cruelty one day after 38 dogs, 11 of which had died, were found in a home at 4302 Black Rock Road in Hampstead.

John J. Roberts, 49, and Laura S. Filler, 55, were arrested in Westminster and were being processed in central booking at the Carroll County Detention Center on Saturday night, according to a Carroll County Sheriff’s Office news release.

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Roberts and Filler had been identified by Carroll County animal control, which obtained 51 charges including animal cruelty, aggravated cruelty, and hazardous substance/endanger pet, according to the release.

“This was one of the most disturbing scenes that many of the first responders have ever seen. We are continuing the investigation and are supporting the staff at the Humane Society,” Sheriff Jim DeWees said in the release. “This case is a stark reminder of the unsung work that our local animal control officers and Humane Society staff do day in and day out. I encourage everyone to support their efforts as they take care of the surviving animals that were removed from the residence.”

An anonymous tip alerted animal control to a large number of dogs inside the Black Rock Road residence, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release Friday. The tip also said no one had been seen at the residence for over a week.

Shortly after noon Friday, the Sheriff’s Office, fire companies from Hampstead, Manchester, Pleasant Valley, Gamber and Upperco, along with members from the Carroll County Hazardous Materials Team, assisted with the rescue and recovery of the dogs.

Animal control is continuing the investigation. Anyone with information should contact the Humane Society of Carroll County Animal Control at 410-848-4810.

Donations to assist in the care and rehabilitation of the rescued dogs can be made through the Humane Society of Carroll County at their website, hscarroll.org.

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