Detectives who saved tortured cat among 16 members of the NYPD honored by ASPCA

Detectives Matthew Edelman and Jonathan Kalman were conducting an unrelated investigation when they "came across a horrendous act of animal cruelty"


By Maura Grunland
Staten Island Advance, N.Y.

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Two detectives who arrested a man who allegedly tortured a cat on Facebook Live and a top police official who organizes "Let's Paws for Earth Day" were among those in law enforcement honored by the ASPCA for their efforts protecting animals or raising animal awareness.

Deputy Chief Donna Jones of Patrol Borough Staten Island and Staten Island Gang Squad Detectives Matthew Edelman and Jonathan Kalman were among 16 members of the NYPD and one assistant district attorney honored on Tuesday for their efforts to help animals through the NYPD/ASPCA Partnership.

Edelman and Kalman were conducting an unrelated investigation when they "came across a horrendous act of animal cruelty," according to a news release from the ASPCA.

Tyrike Richardson, 21, allegedly battered his neighbor's cat, named Chester, and used a dust pan to put the feline in the garbage before placing the bin outside his apartment on Arthur Avenue in South Beach on June 29, according to allegations in court documents. A sickening video of a man who appeared to be torturing the then 2-year-old male cat was screened on Facebook live. 

In the video, a man later identified by authorities as Richardson, appears to drop a wooden chair on the animal. He then appears to jam a long wooden stick into the stomach and face of the motionless feline. In another clip, the man is seen teasing the cat with a large knife while the pet bats it away.

"They observed a Facebook video of a perpetrator beating a cat named Chester," the ASPCA said of Edelman and Kalman. "The detectives immediately began searching for Chester and found him dumped in the garbage."

"Had they not acted so quickly, Chester likely would have died, and possibly never been found at all," the ASPCA said. "Det. Edelman also followed through with the investigation, obtaining a statement from the defendant that ultimately led to his arrest."

Richardson is due back in state Supreme Court in St. George on Jan. 4 on animal torture and cruelty charges, according to public records.

'LET'S PAWS FOR EARTH'

Jones was the lead facilitator for the "Let's Paws for Earth Day" event held on Staten Island in April.

"She initiated this event to provide residents in Staten Island an opportunity to connect with police officers, social service agencies, city agencies, and various animal welfare groups," the ASPCA said.

"Attendees celebrated Earth Day with a DJ, the NYPD rock wall, the ASPCA adoption van and multiple give-a-ways.

"This event was innovative and combined the efforts of law enforcement, human service agencies and animal welfare organizations to provide support to residents in the borough."

The ASPCA identified the additional honorees as: Deputy Chief James Luongo, Special Investigations Division; Deputy Inspector Kelly Kilfeather, Police Academy; Sergeant Michael Murphy, Animal Cruelty Investigation Squad; Sergeant Brendan McGuigan, 47th Precinct; Sergeant Wendell Seymour, Patrol Borough Queens North; Detective John Glynn, Animal Cruelty Investigation Squad; Detective Charles Cadiz, Animal Cruelty Investigation Squad; Detective Marique Monzert, 105th Precinct; Detective Walter Brant, Police Service Area 2; Police Officer Earl Rochester, 67th Precinct; Police Officer Danielle Venuto, 9th Precinct; Police Officer Judy Biondolillo, 23rd Precinct; Police Officer Catherine H. Klyde, School Safety Division; Assistant District Attorney Karen Turner, Kings County District Attorney's Office.

©2017 Staten Island Advance, N.Y

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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