NJ animal control officer resigns amid text suit

    One of New Jersey’s most visible animal control officers has resigned following a lawsuit which alleges he sent racist texts.

    Victor “Buddy” Amato was chief of the Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals for 12 years.

    It’s alleged in a lawsuit filed by an animal cruelty investigator that Amato compared blacks to primates and made degrading comments about Jews and homosexuals.

    Amato tells the Asbury Park Press the texts were “a bunch of jokes” between “a bunch of guys” that reached a person who wasn’t supposed to get them.

    Amato wouldn’t comment on the lawsuit or the content of the messages.

    The 60-year-old says it was a pleasure serving the animals of Monmouth County.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.