Central Islip - (WALK) Prosecutors say there's another chapter in the twisted tale of a Long Island animal shelter worker accused of disposing a small dog in a West Islip Dumpster: He's also accused of tossing off a miniature poodle in Babylon.
Michael Papini, 30, of Lindenhurst, is free today after his arraignment Saturday on charges of felony animal cruelty for allegedly dropping a live Lahso apso into a garbage bin behind a gas station in West Islip Monday. Papini did not enter a plea, and was released after posting $500 bond.
Later Saturday, Suffolk prosecutors and agents of the Suffolk County SPCA said Papini may also be responsible for disposing of a miniature poodle by releasing the dog from a parked car on Cooper Street in Babylon Monday.
The poodle is a five-year-old, cream-colored male named Bailey (photo). The Suffolk SPCA is offering a reward for information leading to Bailey's recovery.
Papini's image was recorded on surveillance video, allegedly in the act of disposing a plastic bag containing the Lhaso apso, named Cherry. Cherry was found alive by a man searching the Dumpster for cans and bottles. She had apparently freed herself from a carrier and chewed through the plastic bag.
Papini came to the attention of prosecutors when shelter employees found a microchip identifying Cherry's owner, an acquaintance who said she could no longer care for Cherry, nor the miniature poodle, Bailey.
The woman told investigators she gave Papini $250 dollars to take her pets to the shelter. Instead, Papini kept the money and dumped the dogs. He was also allegedly recorded on surveillance video in the act releasing Bailey on Cooper Street, according to court records.
Papini is reportedly suspended from his job as a kennel attendant at the Islip animal shelter in Bay Shore.
Anyone with information about the case, or can help locate Bailey is urged to call the Suffolk County SPCA: 631-382-7722.
Photo: Suffolk County SPCA