Ohio cop shoots 5 kittens dead, with kids listening, to “euthanize them”

I realize this is two abominable pet stories in one day, but a reader just sent me this story, and I’m beside myself.  This is possibly even worse than the poor turtle that got beaten to death on a Wisconsin golf course while trying to lay it eggs.  In this case, a cop claims that he had no choice to but to shoot five kittens outside a woman’s home in order to “euthanize them.”

Oh, and he did it with children nearby, listening to the carnage.

Kitten via Shutterstock

Kitten via Shutterstock

(UPDATE: The Ohio Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is calling for the police officer to be fired and brought up on charges for cruelty to animals.)

In a nutshell, a woman calls Animal Control because there are five feral kittens living outside her house.  The “Humane Officer” shows up, tells her the shelters are full and that the animals will be going to “kitty heaven.”  She understands that they need to be euthanized, so she consents.  The cop then pulls out his gun and methodically shoots all five kittens dead, in front of the woman, and with her kids right inside the house listening to the carnage.

And now that the mother of the house, and much of the Internet, is outraged that this police officer shot five innocent kittens to death right outside her door, with her children fully aware of what he was doing, the North Ridgeville Police Department have issued a statement on their Facebook page claiming that this is what all humane societies do, shoot kittens in the head:

NRPD recognized the concerns of those who believe feral cats should not be killed for simply trying to survive but also acknowledges other research that recognizes the risks associated with these animals and the need to manage feral cats. Research and other animal organizations accept shooting as an acceptable means of euthanasia.

The local Ohio branch of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals responded on its Facebook page that that is a lie:

No HUMANE organization would recommend that non-threatening animals be shot as a method of euthanasia. The use of gunshot to end an animal’s life should only be used when an animal is attacking or has been injured so seriously that ending suffering must be immediate. The 8 to 10 week-old kittens posed no immediate threat to anyone. Trap, Neuter, and Release Programs (TNR) have been in place in a multitude of cities and towns throughout Ohio and the United States for years. Humane societies and shelters not choosing TNR as an option, should only be using Euthanasia by Injection (EBI).

And of course, local Police Chief Freeoman has investigated and determined that it’s appropriate for an officer to fire his weapon in order to kill defenseless kittens.

After visiting the scene, talking with the responding officer and re-interviewing the complainant, I have decided his actions were appropriate and have decided not to impose any disciplinary measures for the incident.

Oh, and Chief Freeman added that it would be “irresponsible” for the North Ridgeville Police Department not to shoot kittens in the head:

We are here to help those who seek our assistance. Our agency prides itself on not telling people, “It’s not our problem or there is nothing that we can do for you.” This would be the easy way out. To walk away and leave a safety issue unresolved is irresponsible.

You might not be surprised to hear that the cops have deleted the 1,000 seriously ticked off comments that were left behind on their Facebook page. Here are a handful of the new comments:

Cop-shoots-kittens-2 cop-shoots-kittens-1

Absolutely incredible.

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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  • amber

    if a regular person killed those kittens it would be animal cruelty and they would go to prison, but the officer didn’t get anything no trouble at all. I would of adopted those kittens so they wouldn’t be shot and they would of had a great home.

  • AJ Quintana

    And I’m supposed to believe that THIS kind of police officers are here for protection and reinforcement of the law? Yeah, right…

  • This is abominable. Absolutely is. How can anyone in their right senses
    consent to the killing of innocent lives? To what level of cruelty can
    someone plunge like the ‘humane officer’ did here? What lesson did the kids
    learn here? Above all how can a most inhuman act like this one be determined

  • Melaroosa

    Well Tim, you’re a moron who is apparently incapable of grasping the multitude of issues involved here, over and above the pain and suffering of these poor animals. I hope somebody someday enlightens you, preferably via the same mechanism. A world full of stupid, inane, insensitive people is entirely too dangerous a place in which to live.

  • YV Gal

    Yet ANOTHER instance of fucking psychopath cops on the loose. How much longer are We The People going to tolerate this kind of sanctioned insanity??

  • Rogers

    Build Your Own Moral Compass! Now available from IKEA


    I read an article several years ago that talks about how police departments will only hire people with an average mid level IQ intelligence score. The reason being is that the job requires a lot of mundane sitting around and waiting. The belief is that if they have people of too much intellect or intelligence doing this job, they will get bored of it and not stay long term.

    Based on the level of emotional intelligence shown by the officer and his chief in the decisions they made, this is quite evidently true in both of them.

  • Tyler

    You’re the problem dumb ass!

  • Tyler

    You’re an idiot. If I see you on the street begging for food I’m just going to say oh he’s bringing disease let’s shoot him.

  • A P

    Getting shot is not a humane way to die. It’s extremely painful and does not guarantee instant death as proper euthanasia would; those kittens could have been immobilized but suffering for some time (I’m guessing this guy does not have the veterinary training to make that determination… which is why normally we require such of people who put animals down “humanely.”) Moreover, do you not think it might be a teensy bit traumatic for a bunch of children to watch baby animals violently killed in front of them? Considering this is a common way for kidnappers to terrorize their abductees…

  • That’s a good thing.

  • pappyvet

    This policeman in my opinion is a……fargoing icehole and a….sun on the beach

  • catrinka

    how can we guy this guy fired?!!!!!!!!

  • Tim Newt

    I presume that you mean homeless human beings. I think everyone of them has a sad story about how they got there and they deserve the kindness of humanity to help them get back on their feet. I give money to the homeless I encounter.

  • “I don’t really see a problem with how he euthanized the ferel cats” I would hate to know what you think about the homeless.

  • Tim Newt

    I don’t really see a problem with how he euthanized the ferel cats. I do think it was poor judgement to discharge a firearm at that location and situation. He should have taken them away and then shot them. Also I see a food dish placed out for the cats, it seems to me that if the homeowner did not want the cats there, they should not have placed food out for them.

  • Rainorchid Cat

    I love cats. They shouldn’t shoot kitties. I don’t think that’s very nice.

  • I know

  • “We are ALL the enemy” That is exactly the police mentality.

  • JamesR

    Well, I don’t think this plaintiff was MENSA, and your story does sound familiar! It’s just not findable. The real problem here is by whatever means the dull recruits of yesteryear are now the CHIEFS of today, from the looks of this department’s response. We’re all in DEEP SHIT.

  • Matt Bible

    That’s right. They have no problem enforcing laws (many of which are corrupt and inhumane) on the populous. However, when it comes time for them to face the music, the department tucks tail and runs.

  • And you’re in a suburb, near homes, with kids inside. You don’t shoot a gun 5 times, the entire neighborhood probably had a heart attack.

  • W.O.

    The clinic I work at participates in the TNR program and we have had great success with it. Many of these ferals are very people-friendly due to their close proximity. I highly doubt 8-10 week old kittens posed any threat whatsoever, if the ones we’ve gotten to spay and neuter are any indication. The most they do is hiss. This is ridiculous.

  • Shoot a PHOTO instead! They must have been there 8-10 weeks. Post it on sites such as YouTube and ect. Maybe someones lives could have been enriched by them. In what manner and how did the killer describe his actions to his friends? Should he or shouldn’t he be what he is today or been?

  • Sweetie

    It was on a TV program about two years ago or so. I don’t remember the guy’s name. Maybe he eventually lost on appeal? It said he won in the program.

  • cole3244

    i equate animal cruelty to child abuse and men beating women, i have a hard time using humor for these inexcusable offenses, but that’s me.

  • fentwin

    I wouldn’t doom the whole species due to the actions of a relatively few bozo rectocraniates.

    With our supposed technology to manufacture and steer tornadoes, maybe we could selectively remove the less evolved apes from our population. :)

  • Lil’ Big

    Also not a huge surprise: The police department have since deleted their Facebook page

  • Puma

    The kittens were black, so whats the big deal about the officer shooting them?

  • What kind of idiot would wildly fire off a gun in a back yard?

    Second Amendment Heroes, that’s who…

  • smugrug

    Send the department mail – it’s easy.


  • JamesR

    Police must be being trained to shoot first, always, nationally. It’s a real problem with dogs, cats / kittens must seem the natural next step. It’s a serious problem and it’s systemic. Coincidental with the rise in the paramilitarization of all of our communities’ police forces. It must stop. It will take much time and work to stop, yet we must stop and reverse this. More sad stories here:

    It reminds me of the conversation I had with an officer after being detained on the beach for a minor infraction by a group of them on a riding mower, with a new acquaintance, who had the terrible cop-reaction and no-smarts to run. As they were easily catching my partner in misdemeanor, and I finished off my drink so mebbe they wouldn’t charge me with drinking and it would have gone to waste, the cop told me I was lucky because the fist thing they usually do, (if there are less than the six cops on riding mower I presume,) was to first take down the guy who doesn’t run. So he won’t go anywhere while they catch the accomplice. I laughed and thanked him for the info, and made sure to stop moving.

    This is probably a tactical relative to the policy they apply to family pets. We are ALL the enemy in this scenario. So wrong. So much retraining and reclaiming of our Country we must do.

  • Alysha

    Who comes up with these crazy laws and regulations. One ‘company’ says its ok to shoot kittens, and another ‘company’ says its not. These people are not Gods guys. just pick what you believe and take action accordingly to your belief. If someone shot a kitten outside my house, what options do i really have? Will it make a difference in the big picture?

  • JamesR

    What kind of cop doesn’t think that for the rest of his life he’ll be known as “Kittenslayer.” By his friends.

    Many a sack of dirt are smarter than this cop, Kittenslayer.

  • Matthew J Nadolski

    Well I’m not even fully against shooting the things necessarily. I mean, if they really *have to* die, which they probably didn’t, it probably is more ‘humane’ than the lethal injection, provided he took the few seconds that would be needed to do it right. But firing a gun in public like this for no real reason seems pretty irresponsible to me. What if there was a piece of steel under that wood pile or something? Bullets can bounce off of rocks even.

    And why does it have to be right there in full view of people who *probably don’t want to watch these cats die otherwise they wouldn’t have called you in the first place?* Any reasonably healthy individual could kill a cat if that’s what they really wanted to do. That’s the truly just bizarre part to me.

  • JamesR

    This is the case I am familiar with, in which the Federal appeals court ruled that it is OK to effectively discriminate against the smart simply if the test were fairly applied to all. All protected classed, the ‘smart’ not being one. Too high a score only affects them… I know of no other case, and no case in which this Orwellian practice has been struck down. http://www.nytimes.com/1999/09/09/nyregion/metro-news-briefs-connecticut-judge-rules-that-police-can-bar-high-iq-scores.html

    It’s OLD yet it still circulates as ‘new’ periodically. If you know of a specific case where intellectual discrimination has been overruled please share.

    …Smart people know hen they’re beaten – and know when an accusation based on test or application is hard to prove, the main argument against already upheld by Federal Court precedent over a decade past.

    Over a decade of smarter cops never having been. A statistically skewed population of police, skewed towards average and below. By design. Certainly there is a certain point to not wanting a new hire to become bored with the work, but on the other hand intelligence and interest in the type of work are different things and this test / these tests seemed (seem) to only weed out the smarter or cleverer.

    Intelligence per-se will never become a protected class, nor need it be, if we recognize that some professions should not be skewed towards the dumb!!! A few simple laws will fix this. Over time.

  • YouGotitWrong

    You mean the guy who was excluded from the New Loudon Police Department because his IQ was too high, and who actually LOST the case? http://abcnews.go.com/US/court-oks-barring-high-iqs-cops/story?id=95836#.Ubk-uZzN1zG

  • Or challenged his authority with insolent stares.

  • Yep

  • It was senseless. There are alternatives. What kind of cop or human being would shoot kitties within ear shot of kids.

  • I did a similar thing in Sf back in the worst of the HIV crises, where I would often enter homes or apartments where beloved pets would be left alone or ‘family’ would want the pets euthanized because they were too much bother. There are many excellent adoption groups who specialize in finding homes and protecting animals. This WI thug cop is disgusting—- I empathize with Skippy, sometimes you have to have humor to handle horror.

  • libsechumanist

    Yeah, I have one lying on my legs and another at the end of the bed. What a sadistic asshat.

  • SkippyFlipjack

    Is a “Humane Officer” like a “Peace Officer,” what they call the police these days? Or was it an officer specializing in animal control?

  • SkippyFlipjack

    I want to make a joke about how one of the kittens charged the officer, or how the officer couldn’t be sure they didn’t have little kitty rabies, or how he did fire a warning shot first, or that he was pretty sure one of them was a mountain lion, or that he only used his firearm because he was out of pepper spray.. anything to sand the edge off

    but fuck I just can’t. what a sick fucking story.

  • cole3244

    i rescue cats and myself & others trap & spay & neuter then try and find good homes or release some back in the same area where they can’t produce more litters, that is done all around the area i live in by many groups, no one here would think of doing something like this.

    in my area if you discharge a firearm it is considered illegal, also our animal control officers don’t carry guns but again i live in a fairly civilized area so maybe i’m not in touch with the barbaric way of doing things, animal abusers eventually graduate to the human species for their entertainment as this psychopath might.

    finally, one of my house cats is a feral i caught in 1998, although i can’t pick her up and she is still very feral she is a good girl and deserving of a life without the fear of violence by the most vicious species on earth, us. anger doesn’t even begin to describe how i feel right now.

  • Sweetie

    There was a man, a member of MENSA, who sued a department for denying him eligibility due to high IQ. He won the case.

  • Naja pallida

    Rescue groups across the nation are taxed to the limit dealing with our own collective irresponsibility, but that doesn’t mean they wouldn’t have responded if someone had contacted them. It is one of the amazing things about working with these groups. Just when you think they’ve given all they can give, they always somehow manage to give a little more.

  • RepubAnon

    I’m surprised the officer didn’t tase the kittens a few times before shooting them. I mean, what if they had been armed with a banana, or a pointed stick, or raspberries?

  • DRoseDARs

    The kittens gave him dehumanizing stares.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    I am sitting here with an ex-feral kitten curled up on my lap. There are rescue groups around.

  • Monoceros Forth

    I’m surprised the cop didn’t trot out the all-excusing “I felt my life was in danger” explanation.

  • If they can’t practice on demonstrators or pepper spray handcuffed women….ktties will do.

  • Naja pallida

    Protecting their own is what police forces are best at.

  • That police force seriously has some issues. For the chief to do the “circling the wagons” garbage really bothers me.

  • Sorry :)

  • Here’s the great irony: usually academy graduates in the lower percentage of their class get hired first, because in this county at least that the smart ones won’t stay long. Dumbos with guns and bad judgement are typical around here.

  • Naja pallida

    A good example of someone who obviously does not understand when it is appropriate to discharge their firearm and when it isn’t, and thus should not be permitted to carry one. But lack of judgment when it comes to animal control issues are not rare, by any means. It is pretty much the norm. In most cities, animal control is the worst funded and worst trained department. They cut corners wherever possible, and many places won’t even respond to animal calls unless there is the risk of a person being injured. Most won’t respond to calls where they suspect the animal is a native species, even if that animal is being a problem. That’s assuming they even have a dedicated animal control department, and don’t just dispatch whoever is on duty. They often rely entirely on third-party volunteers, pest control services, or animal rescue organizations to do their job for them. I got a call a few days ago from a frantic old lady, saying she called animal control but they refused to help her. She had come across a snake in the parking lot of a local grocery store, and she was sure it shouldn’t be there. In Texas, 9 times out of 10, any snake call is going to be our native Texas rat snake, so animal control generally won’t respond to a snake call, unless for some reason they already happen to have an officer nearby. I went out in their stead, to find a five-foot boa constrictor wound around some bushes on the edge of the parking lot. Even if animal control had responded, they don’t have the knowledge or training to properly deal with such a situation, and who knows how they would have reacted.

  • JamesR

    There needs to be a movement, nationwide State by State, to outlaw the exclusion for employment applicants for police officers because they are too smart. This is what you get. Kittens and dogs and people shot, etc.

    A smarter and well educated police force will not carry out unconstitutional orders, or carry them out less, and do stupid and inhumane things, less, to people and animals. Over time. We need to start now.

  • TheOriginalLiz

    I wish there was a special circle in hell for kitten shooters and turtle smashers. I swear, the sooner we become extinct, the better.

  • AnitaMann

    Um, thanks John. Now you’ve ruined my afternoon too. Just sickening.

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