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Police Officer Shoots Cat: Does the Punishment fit the Crime?

A 911 call from North Catasauqua, Pennsylvania, reporting an injured cat in a yard ended up with the cat dead of a gunshot wound.

A North Catasauqua policeman responded to the call and evaluated the situation. According to the Northampton District Attorney, the cop noted injuries to the cat’s hind legs and that she was trailing blood.

That’s when he made the decision to shoot the cat and end it’s life.

The cat, Sugar, lived just a few doors down with her owner, Tom Newhart, who said, “She knew her name. If you’d call her, she’d come to you.” He also pointed out to interviewers that the officer didn’t follow the law in regards to Sugar’s shooting. According to local law, two people have to agree to the severity of an injury before an officer can choose to euthanize an animal. Obviously that didn’t happen in this case.

Northampton DA John Morganelli announced this week that he is citing the officer in question – but that only amounts to the equivalent of a parking ticket. Not enough punishment, when you consider the fact that a post-mortem veterinary exam revealed that Sugar actually was not injured before she was shot and killed.

Newhart is considering opening a civil case against the officer.




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