North Carolina man accused of abandoning pet fish faces animal cruelty charges

Left: Michael Ray Hinson (New Hanover County Sheriff's Office) | Right: Oscar fish (Stock image/Getty)

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. — A North Carolina man is facing animal cruelty charges after allegedly failing to feed and change the water for his pet fish, WECT reports.

Michael Ray Hinson, 53, is charged with three counts of misdemeanor cruelty to animals and one count of abandonment of an animal.

Hinson was evicted from his home on March 22 and left behind an oscar fish in a dirty fish tank, deputies said.

The fish appeared to be malnourished and suffering from hole in the head disease. It is being nursed back to health at The Fish Room in Wilmington.

Hinson was given a $4,000 unsecured bond and later released from jail.

Oscar fish are valued at about $40-$50, Ethan Lane, with The Fish Room, told WECT.

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