An animal shelter working in North Texas is being investigated for possible animal cruelty charges after he allegedly killed a kitten.
Denton police officers were called to the Linda McNatt Animal Adoption Center to investigate a claim that an employee killed a kitten in the shelter during his final day of employment. A witness to the incident told police the man forcefully threw the kitten to the ground, causing its death, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported.
According to a police statement, the witness reported the man was attempting to change the kitten’s collar. The kitten apparently became irritated at being handled and bit the man on his hand. She said he then “forcefully threw the kitten to the floor, killing it.”
No report of the biting incident was mad to the shelter. Shelter policies require employees to report animal bites. The employee also did not appear to have sought medical treatment for the kitten.
A report filed on the animal’s death by the employee allegedly states the kitten was logged out of the system as “sick, died in shelter,” the police news release stated.
Denton Police Department Spokesman Shane Kizer told the Denton Record-Chronicle that if the department does make an arrest, it will be follow the Christmas holiday weekend.
Officials are reportedly conducting an investigation into possible charges of cruelty to a non-livestock animal. If charged with the Class A misdemeanor, the man could face up to 1 year in the Denton County jail and/or a fine of up to $4,000. If he has prior convictions of animal cruelty, the charge could be raised to a State Jail Felony.
The identity of the man being investigated by the Denton Police Department has not been released pending the outcome of the department’s investigation.
The news reports did not contain any comment from officials of the Linda McNatt Animal Adoption Center.