Police: Nacogdoches man kicks, kills kitten

Juan Rodriguez mug shot courtesy of Nacogdoches County Jail.
Juan Rodriguez mug shot courtesy of Nacogdoches County Jail.

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A Nacogdoches man found himself behind bars Sunday night after police say he kicked and killed a kitten.

Neighbors say they watched 36 year old, Juan Rodriguez, stomp, kick, and kill a kitten in the 700 block of Fulgham street.

"From what I understand, you know, they were kind of tipsy, or whatever, how you want to call it. And, I guess they seen an innocent cat because they got a lot of cats down that way. And, I guess he just started taking his aggression out on the cat," said neighbor Keenan Blount.

One woman, who didn't want to go on camera, says she heard laughter during the reported attack. It comes as a shock to those in the neighborhood.

"It's a lot of free roaming cats around here," said Blount.

At 8:10 p.m. Sunday night, Nacogdoches police found the dead kitten and charged Rodriguez with animal cruelty.

"They really just tend to they business. I don't know what made him snap. I don't know what's going on really. They stomped the cat, like they was stomping on ants or something," said Blount.

While this isn't a family pet, neighbors feed the stray cats and welcome them.  Nacogdoches Animal Services tell us abuse is not that uncommon.

"Usually we get about one or two calls a day. Most of the time, it doesn't pan out to be anything, but then sometimes it really does. You know, it's taken very seriously, and you know we jump on it immediately, whenever we have a cruelty situation," said Nacogdoches Animal Services supervisor, Jamie Shelton.

Unwanted animals are always accepted at the shelter.

"We do provide care for them here, and they are better off here, so I just want people to know that this is the best option for them because they'll receive medical treatment, and like I said, food and water, and a safe place to sleep," said Shelton.

As for the kitten who wandered into that yard, a necropsy is being performed to determine a cause of death.

According to Nacogdoches Police spokesman Sgt. Greg Sowell, the crime is a state-jail felony because it involves a non-livestock animal.

Copyright 2011 KTRE. All rights reserved.