Resort guest charged with cruelty to his own puppies

By Chuck Weber

PALM BEACH, FL (WFLX)-A guest at a high end Palm Beach resort wound up behind bars, charged with cruelty to his puppies-- and police say it was caught on video. Nicolaie Blaga, of Chicago, made his first court appearance Wednesday, accused of hitting, kicking, and stomping on the dogs.

"Lord" and "Lady," the man's three-month old German Shepherd puppies, are now at Palm Beach County Animal Control. "Lady" wears a red cast, because she suffered a broken leg.

It happened at the Four Seasons Resort. In hotel surveillance video, you see a man, identified by Palm Beach Police as Blaga, stomping on a puppy's hindquarters. Video also shows Blaga dragging an apparently injured dog by a leash.

And according to the arrest report, the hotel manager saw Blaga throw the puppies against the wall of his room, and yank them by the leash while tied to the bed post, causing them to yelp. The hotel security manager told investigators Blaga yanked, hit, and kicked the puppies.

Captain David Walesky, of Animal Control, said he could not comment on the Palm Beach case, but emphasized people who report cruelty are doing the right thing. "It's amazing how many sad things we see come through our doors," said Captain Walesky. "We need witnesses that will help us take it the distance, and get that animal away from a bad situation."

Police also charged Blaga with driving with an invalid license. Judge Krista Marx set bail for Blaga at $5,500. Animal Control will go to court in the days ahead to try to gain custody of the puppies.