Remember the story of the man who drowned his cat that we shared with you last week? Thomas Newhouse told Lake Waukomis police that he had drowned the cat after it bit and scratch his fiancee. He had originally placed the cat in a carrier. Newhouse placed the carrier underwater and it was witnessed by a neighbor and children. Newhouse could have easily taken the cat to be euthanized but instead chose to drown it.
Prosecutor Eric Zahnd’s office released a statement Tuesday explaining why no charges are being filed.
“Given that Newhouse could have easily taken the cat to a veterinarian to be medically euthanized, Zahnd said he found Newhouse’s method of killing the animal disheartening. However, Missouri’s animal abuse law, which prohibits killing animals in certain ways or intentionally causing injury or suffering to animals, does not apply to the ‘“killing of an animal by the owner”’ or the owner’s agent.”
Zahnd said he would not be filing any charges despite an enormous public outcry calling for him to file a class D felony charge. “People are definitely outraged,” animal advocate Julie Pendarvis said, “Thomas Newhouse tortured and abused that cat.” Pendarvis is organizing a petition, and so far she has more than 1,300 signatures, including 17 percent of the Lake Waukomis community.
Let’s get out there and change this law!