Police allege that a 75-year-old resident of St. Simons Island Mobile Home Park trapped a neighbor’s cat, then shot it three times in the head with a pellet pistol Tuesday morning after holding it captive for two days, according to an arrest warrant filed Tuesday in Glynn County Magistrate Court.
Incredibly, the cat survived. It was treated by a Brunswick veterinarian and returned to its owner later Tuesday, said Tiffani Hill, Director of Glynn County Animal Control.
Glynn County Police arrested John Michael Weaver and charged him with cruelty to animals. He was booked into the Glynn County Detention Center and released later Tuesday on $681 bond, jail records show.
Police were called at about 10:16 a.m. Tuesday to the mobile home park at 1700 Demere Road, where a man had allegedly just shot a cat, according to the county police report attached to the magistrate court warrant. Police then received a report that the suspect was leaving the mobile home park, with the cat, in a blue Ford Ranger pickup truck, the report said.
An officer stopped the truck as it was turning onto Demere Road, the report said. When asked about the incident, Weaver allegedly responded, “What cat?”
“Michael at first denied shooting a cat and did not know what I was talking about,” county police officer Brandenberry wrote in the report.
Weaver allegedly changed his story shortly after that, police said.
“Ultimately, Michael advised that he did have the cat in his truck and he was taking it to animal control,” the report said. “Michael also admitted to shooting the cat.”
Weaver allegedly told police it was his intention to “euthanize the cat,” the report said. Weaver allegedly told police he trapped the cat two days earlier, indicating that the animal annoyed him with its constant noise. He told police, “it hasn’t been quiet since” he trapped it, the report said.
Weaver then allegedly shot the cat several times with a pellet pistol Tuesday morning. The cat was in the truck, and Weaver allegedly told police he was taking it to Glynn County Animal Control when they stopped him. Police also recovered the pellet pistol in the truck, the report said.
“Michael ultimately advised he had trapped the cat, held it for two days, and then shot it with a pellet gun while it was caged to attempt to kill the cat,” Brandenberry wrote.
Police took Weaver to jail. An animal control officer arrived and took the cat back to animal control headquarters at 4765 U.S. Highway 17, the report said. Animal control then took the cat to Golden Isles Animal Hospital, 1965 U.S. Highway 17, where it was treated by veterinarian Dr. James Hornbuckle, animal control’s Hill said.
“The vet advised the X-ray shows three pellets imbedded in the cat’s head underneath the skin, but did not penetrate the skull,” the county police report noted. A fourth pellet was found lodged in the cat’s side, the report said.
The cat was treated and returned to its owner, Hill said. Weaver’s truck was towed from the scene, police said.