Stench Of 36 Dead Cats May Have Set Off Fire Alarm At Home Of New Jersey Cat Lady

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A fire alarm went off at the home of a 65-year-old New Jersey woman early Sunday morning, and authorities tell the Voice it may have had something to do with the stench of the dozens of dead cats decomposing inside the house.

We didn't realize dead-cat stank could trigger a smoke detector, but Bradley Beach Police Chief Leonard Guida says "it's possible."

About 2 a.m. Sunday, emergency crews responded to the three-story Monmouth home of the 65-year-old cat lady after a fire alarm went off inside the house.

When authorities got to the scene, they found no fire. They did, however, find 36 dead cats in various stages of decomposition scattered throughout the house.

Guida says smoke and the stench of 36 decomposing cat carcasses aren't the only things that can cause a smoke detector to go off -- dust, condensation, and other airborne items also could have set off the alarm.

Guida says it's unclear whether the owner of the dead cats has been formally charged with any crimes. However, she's expected to face animal cruelty charges and code enforcement citations.
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