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SPCA Volunteer In New Jersey Admits To Animal Cruelty Charges

(Credit: CBS 2)

(Credit: CBS 2)

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FREEHOLD, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A longtime Monmouth County, N.J. Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals volunteer pleaded guilty Monday to animal cruelty charges.

Gretchen Rell entered her plea in Monmouth County court on Monday.

Authorities said more than 300 dead birds and animals were found in a Little Silver, N.J. home that Rell shared with her 95-year-old mother.

Authorities said the SPCA wildlife volunteer had taken in numerous animals for the purpose of rehabilitation between January 2013 and March 2014.

But officials said the animals died of starvation and dehydration instead.

Attorney Dennis Melofchik told The Star-Ledger of Newark that Rell was a good-hearted woman who was overwhelmed by the number of animals in her care.

Animal advocates attending the hearing Monday objected to a possible plea deal for Rell.

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