Kinder pets under attack

Halen Doughty
X-ray of a cat named Sammy that was shot in the pelvis with a pellet gun by an attacker believed to be shooting random neighborhood pets.

At least four pets in Kinder have been shot with a pellet gun in the past year. Director of the Humane Society of Louisiana Jeff Dorson said more victims are coming forward, as people have commented online that their pets were also targeted since November of last year. He said he's never seen anything like this before.

"I've been doing it 30 years, and there's definitely some psychotic issues there if somebody feels the need to shoot someone else's pet," Dorson said.

The attacks all occurred in the same neighborhood within two or three blocks of one another. The neighborhood has a suspect in mind, and police are conducting interviews in the ongoing investigation.

Dorson says the community feels under attack.

"Pellets may sound harmless, but they do a lot of damage, especially to smaller animals," Dorson said.

Dorson called the events both heartbreaking and expensive, as one family had to spent $2,000 to repair their tabby cat's broken femur. Neighbors say the cat, Sammy, hasn't been the same since, and the once-friendly tabby has become skittish and slow.

The latest victim in is a yellow lab name Maley, who was shot numerous times while in her kennel next to her house. Her owner, Theresa Lovejoy, said one of the pellets was too close to her spine for vets to remove it. But Maley is making a full recovery after struggling with a staph infection. Lovejoy expressed her frustration that the person behind these heinous crimes has not been charged.

"They need to find the person who done it and make him be responsible for his actions," she said, "If a person is going to harm an animal, they're going to harm a child or another human being."

Lovejoy said one man in the neighborhood was told by police not to shoot his pellet gun anymore, after he allegedly shot squirrels in his yard while hiding behind a tree. His name has not been released.

The first fur baby targeted by the alleged shooter was an Australian Shepherd named Snowball, who was killed last year in the same neighborhood. His owner, Jules Fontetnot, said the chain keeping Snowball in the yard broke, and when the dog ventured out into the neighborhood, he was fatally shot. Fontenot said when he contacted authorities, things didn't go as planned.

"They didn't' want to file a police report. They were more concerned about giving me a ticket for the dog getting loose from the leash, and that was about it," Fontenot said.

Fontenot paid the $110 ticket and moved his family out of Kinder shortly after the incident because the local law enforcement didn't seem to care. He noted children in the neighborhood heard the shots and witnessed the dog's death. He's convinced the person who killed Snowball is the same person targeting neighborhood pets to this day.

The Humane Society is offering a $500 reward for information leading to an arrest. Tips should be reported to the Kinder Police Department.

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