NORTH MERRICK - A 36-year-old mother was arrested Tuesday after authorities say they found two children and 15 dogs living in deplorable conditions inside a North Merrick home.
Yvette Seibert was arrested and charged with child endangerment and animal neglect. Her home on Aster Avenue is considered uninhabitable.
Neighbors say they were aware of how bad the conditions were.
News 12 Long Island obtained a copy of a letter sent anonymously to the Nassau County Executive's Office last month.
In it, neighbors described the smell from the home as "toxic." They complained about barking all day and night. They also said the girls were left home alone while the dogs defecated inside the home.
Furthermore, neighbors wrote that the youngest daughter was always asking them for food.
According to that anonymous letter, neighbors on Aster Avenue tried to talk to Seibert about what they were seeing and hearing. They said she was unapproachable and dismissive.
Detective Matthew Roper, of the Nassau SPCA, says there were five or six dogs per cage with no available fresh food or water. He said it was unclear how long the dogs were in the cages.
The dogs were taken to the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter. They include 11 schnauzers, three Chihuahuas and a Jack Russell terrier ranging from a few months old to 3 years old.
In court, News 12 Long Island learned that Seibert's children are staying with her father-in-law, who is a retired NYPD officer. Sources tell News 12 Long Island that Seibert's husband Roy, a Suffolk police officer, was killed in 2008 while working a second job as a sanitation worker. He slipped and fell off the back of a truck.