Brooklyn, NY – Jose Santiago was so infuriated when his long-time roommate announced she was moving out that he murdered her goldfish right in front of her.
Law enforcement officials told the New York Post that Santiago murdered roommate Brenda Alvarez’s pet goldfish in a fit of rage on Wednesday, flushing one down the toilet and suffocating the other.
The two fish, named Bonnie and Clyde, became victims when Santiago spotted Alvarez packing her bags in their Flatbush apartment.
“They were my babies! I can’t have children, so my pets are like my kids,” Alvarez recalled. “They were beautiful fish and cost about $25 each.”
“I did everything for him, and the only thing I ever asked him to do was the laundry,” she said, confused by Santiago’s actions. “So, why did he do this to me?”
Alvarez said that she wanted to move out of their apartment because her friendship with Santiago had been strained lately. The 45-year-old Alvarez grew up a block away from 47-year-old Santiago, and they had been friends ever since, until recently.
“I was gonna leave . . . so, I started packing, but he kept antagonizing me,” Alvarez said. “Then he went crazy!”
Alvarez said that Santiago pushed her around before turning on her fish, but that when she saw him flush the one and seal the other in a plastic bag, she lost it.
“When I saw him kill my fish I went berserk!” Alvarez said.
For the incident, Santiago was arrested and charged with animal cruelty and assault. He was released without bail Thursday. Though her empty aquarium causes her pain, Alvarez still has her 5-year-old Jack Russell terrier, Ice.
Santiago told cops that Alvarez has no one to blame but herself.
“I have a mark on my head, but you’re not going to do anything about it. She pushed me first and started the whole fight.”