HOLY crap - Great news!
Chinchilla is alive and well. Animal Control Officer showed up and when he went to pick up the chinchilla (by the way, confirmed that it is a chinchilla) the little guy started moving. So we provided him with a cardboard box, some lettuce, the aforementioned carrots and a dish of water. The officer said that the chinchilla was pretty badly beat up but that he was "quite far from death's door" and was actually petting the chinchilla with his bare-hand since he was equally convinced that he was free of rabies or any other disease. He believed that will a little TLC at the vet he even knew someone who would adopt the chinchilla.
On a sad note for other pets, he said that over the past couple of years, he's seen quite a few cases like this where someone abandons a pet and in some cases they are not just cats or dogs, lots of creatures like ferrets, exotic birds, chinchillas, etc. And this is just the latest.
Thank God Howie didn't kill him and this little guy who was probably just looking for a bite to eat last night will have a second chance at a good life.