- Associated Press - Saturday, February 14, 2015

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (AP) - Authorities say they charged a Fayetteville man with eight counts of animal cruelty after he left eight dogs locked in a house for more than a month.

Cumberland County deputies said in a news release that six of the dogs died of starvation or dehydration and the two surviving dogs were eating the dead animals.

Investigators say 51-year old Richard Walter left the home in late December to see his partner at Duke University Medical Center in Durham and never returned. They say it appears Walter is OK and just hiding from authorities, but they wouldn’t give details.

A neighbor called animal control on Jan. 27. Authorities say it appeared some of the dogs tried to survive by chewing on furniture in the home.

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