A 19-year old man is facing charges in an animal abuse case that sparked outrage in the community after a dog and cat were found dead with their muzzles taped shut earlier this year.

On January 9, 2014, a Siberian husky was found dead in an alleyway in the 200 block of 99 Avenue S.E.

About a week later, the Humane Society was notified about a black and white domestic short haired cat found in the same alley in a similar condition.

Nicolino Ivano Camardi, 19, is charged with two counts of wilfully causing unnecessary pain, suffering or injury to an animal.

Both animals were taken to a local veterinarian where it was determined that the dog died of starvation and had been chronically malnourished. The cat died of asphyxia and strangulation and also suffered multiple traumatic injuries to the head, tail, and hind limbs.

“This is a, on the face of it, it appears to be intentional cruelty and not the average abuse type case where someone gets really mad at an animal for house soiling or someone loses their temper temporarily. This was methodical, it was chronic and ended in the animal’s deaths,” said Calgary Humane Society Peace Officer Brad Nichols.

“Mr Camardi was arrested on Saturday, May 3, without incident,” said CPS Acting S/Sgt Lloyd Soltys. “He was subsequently held in custody over the weekend and was appearing in court this morning.”

Humane society investigators and Calgary police executed a search warrant on a home in the 9900 block of Bonaventure Drive S.E. on Friday January 24, 2014.

“When we searched the home, with the assistance of Calgary police, we were able to seize several items which we thought were of interest, including various samples that we would test forensically,” said Nichols.

Investigators are pleased to see a resolution to the case and charges laid.

“The public outcry in this case was warranted as was the resources that we sank into it and so yes, it did take four months, but at the end of the day, we were thorough and we’re happy with the package that we were able to put together and ultimately I think we have a solid case for conviction,” said Nichols.

Nichols says the animals were sourced off of Kijiji by the accused and were obtained about two to three months before the animals were found dead.

He says online buyers and sellers of pets need to be cautious about who they are dealing with and that there are better ways to rehome animals.

“Is it my recommendation that you rehome animals online? No and certainly these cases drive that point home. There are community resources available for people that need to rehome their animals and one of those great resources is the Calgary Humane Society.”

Investigators removed a cat from the home and say it will not be returned.

If convicted, Camardi could face a sentence of 18 months to five years or a $10,000 fine.