LEWISTON — Animal welfare officials and police pulled 64 animals — most of them cats — out of an apartment at 116 Howe St. on Wednesday.

One animal was already dead when workers arrived, according to the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, which runs the state’s Animal Welfare Program. The other animals needed immediate medical attention.

Department spokeswoman Courtney Marchelletta said the apartment was occupied when the animals were seized by Animal Welfare officials, who were executing a search warrant. The animals were sent to several shelters across the state, where they were being evaluated and cared for. 

Because the situation remained under investigation, department officials declined to provide details about the seizure, including how they became aware of the animals, what kinds of animals were in the apartment besides cats and which apartment they were taken from.

The building is owned by Double Eagle Properties of Auburn, according to Lewiston tax records. Messages left at Double Eagle were not returned Thursday.

The building has four floors. Second-floor tenant Chris Caron said the animals were seized from the fourth-floor apartment that had been rented by a young family about three months ago.

“I’ve never been in their place, but I guess (others in the building) heard a bunch of mice, snakes, cats, dogs. Just a (expletive) ton of animals,” Caron said.

No one answered the door at the fourth-floor apartment Thursday afternoon. Trash, household debris and the smell of urine filled the hallway outside the unit.

Marchelletta said charges may be considered after all of the animals have been evaluated and the evidence analyzed.

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Animal welfare officials and police on Wednesday seized 64 animals from an apartment in this building at 114 and 116 Howe St. in Lewiston.

Animal Welfare officials and police seized 64 animals from an apartment at 116 Howe St. in Lewiston on Wednesday. A neighbor said the animals were taken from this fourth-floor apartment, where trash and household debris filled the hallway Thursday.

Chris Caron, a second-floor tenant at 116 Howe St. in Lewiston, talks about the seizure of 64 animals from an apartment in his building. He believes the animals were taken from a young family who lived on the fourth floor for about three months. 

Animal Welfare officials and police seized 64 animals — most of them cats — from an apartment at 116 Howe St. in Lewiston on Wednesday. A neighbor said the animals were taken from this fourth-floor apartment, where an old mattress, trash and other household debris filled the hallway Thursday.

Animal Welfare officials and police seized 64 animals from one of the apartments at 116 Howe St. in Lewiston on Wednesday. A neighbor said the animals were taken from this fourth-floor apartment, where trash and household debris filled the hallway Thursday.

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