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U.S. Marshals Capture Howell Fugitive, 24, Wanted In Deaths Of 4 Stolen Puppies

Daniel McDonald and Tricia Jaccoma.
Daniel McDonald and Tricia Jaccoma. Photo Credit: Daniel Mcdonald/Tricia Marie (Facebook)

A 24-year-old Howell woman wanted in the deaths of four stolen farm puppies was taken into custody after nearly three months at large on Friday with help from U.S. Marshals agents, authorities said.

Tricia Jaccoma and Daniel McDonald, 25, were charged with animal cruelty in June after four German Shepherd puppies  were found dead on a Howell campsite, Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni said.

The dogs were approximately three weeks old and being raised at a Somerset County farm -- where McDonald and Jaccoma were also staying -- when they went missing mid-May, Gramiccioni said.

Jaccoma and McDonald relocated to a Howell campsite, where the bodies of two puppies were found in a fire pit and two others had been buried, authorities said.

McDonald was arrested June 10, and since then has remained at the Monmouth County Jail, while Jaccoma was captured Friday.

In addition to the animal cruelty charges, Jaccoma is facing multiple counts of theft charges, the prosecutor said. Her first court appearance is schedule for Sunday, Sept. 6.

Charges against McDonald are pending.

The case is assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Melanie Falco, Director of the Office’s Professional Responsibility and Bias Crimes Unit, and liaison to the Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Law Enforcement Division.

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