All My Children actor Nick Santino committed suicide last Wednesday after his pit bull, Rocco, was euthanized.
Santino's condo board has come under scrutiny following the actor's death, with many pointing their fingers at the building's ban on pit bulls as a contributor to the tragedy, the New York Post reported.
Today I betrayed my best friend and put down my best friend, Santino wrote in a suicide note, according to close friend Stuart Sarnoff. Rocco trusted me and I failed him. He didn't deserve this.
Santino's neighbor Lia Pettigrew told US Weekly that the actor had been harassed by building management about his dog. He was allegedly threatened with a $250 fine for having a barking dog. The dog was not a barker, but somebody complained about a barking dog, another neighbor told US Weekly.
The condo board has refused to accept responsibility for Santino's death. I'm sorry the man is dead, board member Marilyn Fireman told the Post, but it has nothing to do with the pet policy.
The healthy 5-year old pit bull was put to sleep on Tuesday, which also happened to be Santino's 47th birthday. The actor killed himself a few hours later in a pill overdose.
They'll be buried together, Santino's sister, Catherine Schmidt, told the Post. I knew his dog was important to him, it was abused and he saved him.
Schmidt described the dog as lovable and friendly, saying he would not have caused any harm to anyone in the building.
She told the Post that the condo board at One Lincoln Plaza waged a campaign of harassment against Santino and his dog, and the pressure of the whole incident led to the tragedy.
The board had strict pet policies. In 2010 it released a new set of rules that forbid dogs from riding in the main elevator and being left in apartments for more than nine hours at a time. Pit bulls are a breed that are not permitted in the building.
Friends and neighbors were shocked by the news and abusive letters have been sent to the condo board, the Post reported. A picture of the actor has also been placed in the lobby of the building.