Family pet Leo was smashed on the head with a rock and poked with a stick in the sickening attack
FOUR teens who sniggered as they shared photos of a cat they had tortured, leaving its eyeballs popping out, have been slammed in court.
The youths, aged 17, 16, 15 and 15, mutilated the body of treasured family pet cat Leo, smashing its head with a rock and poking it with a stick before stringing it up with a piece of rope while his “eyes were popping out”.
Leo’s owner, mum of two Katie Dowler-Chell also attended the hearing and sat at the back of the court.
The 31-year-old had previously described how sickening the attack was with the cat “like a best friend” to her six-year-old son Lucas.
Speaking in August, the Derby mum said: “I’d been at work and not been home long when I got a call from an unknown number, and it was a woman asking if I had a cat called Leo.
“She was a lady from the RSPCA and said she had Leo with her, and she had identified him from his microchip.
“She said he’d been harmed and was dead – I was completely shocked.
“It sounded like she was struggling to put something into words – then she said, ‘it’s not good, he’s been found with rope wrapped around him’.”
The mum said she did not know what to think, with her stomach dropping as the suspected abuse was relayed to her.
She said: “As I saw him I picked him up, then just dropped to my knees on the floor and started sobbing. I was hysterical.
“His skull was caved in, his neck was fractured, and his broken ribs were crumbling under my fingers – as I held him I could feel them crunching and moving.
“His mouth was bloodied, he had blood coming out of his ear and his eye was bulging out of the socket.
“I just held him for what seemed like an eternity – I didn’t really know what else to do.”
She said her six-old son Lucas “couldn’t stop crying”.
She said: “He wouldn’t be able to comprehend it and it would give him nightmares. Leo wasn’t just a cat, he was part of the family.
“We’re all absolutely devastated – I just can’t get my head around it, I can’t connect the dots and work out why someone would lure a defenceless cat into their clutches, then torture and kill him for sport.
“I thought I’d seen the worst of humanity, but this is just horrendous and it’s floored me.”
RSPCA spokeswoman Rachel Butler said “Leo had rope tied around his chest, and had fractures all over his body. This is a very distressing incident.”
Sentencing was adjourned until November 22 with all four defendants released on bail.
[Source Story: HumansLovingAnimals ]