Just A Failure To Communicate: Ohio Police Clear Officer Who Shot Five Kittens in Family’s Backyard

130612101428_kittens-shotIn Ohio, animal rights activists (and others) are calling for the termination of Humane Officer Barry Accorti after he allegedly shot five kittens on Monday because the shelter was already too full. He reportedly told the family with children that the cats would be going to “kitty heaven.” Accorti is a retired North Ridgeville Police Department sergeant and I am only glad he retired before the county jail became overcrowded.

The Ohio Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals wants Accorti charged with five counts of animal cruelty. He has been working as a part-time humane officer with the department. He responded to a home reporting a feral mother cat and her five kittens were living in a woodpile. He reportedly said that the shelters were full and that the five, 8- to 10-week-old kittens would be going to heaven. The home owner said that Accorti admitted that he was not supposed to do this but that it was justifiable.

Accorti’s account is captured in the police report which includes the following:

“The wood piles were located next to a concrete patio approximately ten feet from the residence. The homeowner advised that the feral cats were causing flea problems within the residence, a foul odor, and leaving deceased wildlife in her yard . . . The homeowner was advised that, due to her safety concerns (proximity of wood pile to house, number of children at the residence, diseases feral cats can develop, fleas, unsanitary conditions), assistance could be rendered but the cats would be euthanized. The complainant agreed to accept assistance and the officer started to dismantle the wood pile . . . The complainant’s husband advised that the mother feral cat had been roaming around for several years and he had tried to remove the feral kittens himself but they would hiss and growl at him. . . . The complainant explained she felt overwhelmed due to the fact that her children were inside the residence and heard the gunshots.”

Now here is the kicker from Police Chief Mike Freeman:

“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. We will talk with the humane officers about improving their communications with the public. We are here to help those who seek our assistance.”

So an officer shots five kittens near a home with children inside and the problem is merely one of “communications”?

What do you think? According to Freeman, the problem comes down to this . . .

Source: WTSP

24 thoughts on “Just A Failure To Communicate: Ohio Police Clear Officer Who Shot Five Kittens in Family’s Backyard”

  1. Are you kidding? This is America where the cops can shoot anyone they like and the cops motto is always shoot to kill.

  2. WoW! Man’s inhumanity knows no bounds.

    Luckily we have a humane Humane Society here. Plus, we have given a home to the cutest little kitten that was living in a culvert-pipe. Guess she was just tossed?

    Depressing world every where I look.

  3. This seems to have been traumatic for the mom so it was undoubtedly traumatic for the kids.

    Feral cats do not make good pets. I had one at one time and took weeks to get her to let me near her. She preferred my plant pots to the litter box. I finally gave her to a family member who lived in the country. They provided her with food and shelter but she was never a pet in the traditional sense. She did, however, save another cat. The other cat was old and got sick. They thought he was dying of old age. He lost his appetite and just stayed in his bed. Feral cat would catch mice and bring them to the back door. She was a huge nag and got old cat out the back to eat. Turns out he had an abscess and when it broke, he got better.

    The kittens, otoh, could have become people-friendly.

    The officer doesn’t deserve “humane” in his job title. Heaven forbid he decide that a child needed to be “removed.”

  4. Even if it HAD to be done this way, and I’m doubtful about that, couldn’t the kittens have been removed out of sight of the mother and kids? This is inhumane to the kittens and to the family.

  5. So, insufficient funds for a few injections? No shelters/vets in the area willing to offer that service? Did no one in the police department consider the optics? Idiots.

  6. You know Darren after reading your post up thread…. I’m more convinced the nazi trained our government….in the art of a police state….

  7. This was highly unprofessional and foolish to shoot those cats where they did. But, consider this.

    Depending on the facilities of the animal control shelter if these cats were disease or flea ridden it would be unwise to put them in with the general population cats for fear of spreading this to other cats, especially if they were going to be put down to begin with. If the facility had a quaranteen area that would be different where they could be put in there just before they were put down.

    Regardless they could have been taken away and even if shooting was performed it is never a good idea to do it in front of children or anyone else for that matter.

    Also, it is sometimes the case where smaller rural towns use firearms to put down animals. I don’t agree with this practice but it is often times the case because of the regulations and training required and cost for the barbituate drug lethal injection is so great it is easier to use a .22 rifle to do this. But when faced with another alternate method by hiring a vet to do this and the cost at $50 or more compared with a few cents with a .22 bullet it is something that budgets are measured by.

    I am not advocating that this be done, and I don’t like the practice but until the costs and regulations are changed some very small towns might continue to do this.

  8. One rarely sees this degree of idiocy and cruelty displayed in public.

    I am, of course, talking about the decision to keep Accorti employed and that his actions were even remotely justifiable.

  9. North Ridgeville is West Virginia North. My wife’s cousin threw a high school graduation for her daughter, who was already a mother of her own daughter. There were five other grads there also: All were pregnant except the cousin who was pregnant with her second. None of the fathers were there.
    And yes, they were all white Christian young ladies in case you were curious.

  10. most officers carry a Glock .40 or .45. I can only imagine what was left of those small animals. what an idiot…

  11. Sure it was a failure to communicate. The message is loud and clear, we protect our own.

  12. I understand the officer’s reasoning, but not his action. I have had to put down a feral animal more than once myself, but it is not something one does lightly, as this officer did. And certainly not with kids in the house.

    As for the animal shelter, I suggest everyone outraged do two things. Send a donation for as much as you can afford to that North Ridgeville, OH animal shelter. Second, check out you own local shelter for crowding and do what you can to expand facilities and round up as many volunteers as you can to help out. Most shelters are woefully understaffed and underfunded.

    And if you have money to spare, how about a quick PayPal donation to the Touray & Meyer Veterinary Clinic in The Gambia. They do wonderful work pro bono with stray animals.


    Here are some links to videos of their work and their patients (not for the squeamish).

  13. This is just insane. I cannot imagine wth he was thinking.

    OTOH – I was volunteering to help at a local human society shelter & eventually got stuck with the duty of cleaning out ‘the room’ after the euthanized animals. Every time it was a dozen or two crates with cats & dogs I knew just a few days ago. Nobody else could deal with it & I tried. After getting done with a particularly bad day of dumping bodies out of crates I went out front to help intake. A guy & his kids rolled up with a box of 6 kittens. I asked him if he was having the mother spayed & his response was “I want my kids to see the miracle of life”. I replied “Let me bring them out back and I can show them the miracle of death!”

    Yeah – they didn’t let me volunteer there any more

  14. Keeping w/ the Cool Hand Luke theme I think they “Need to get his mind right.”

  15. We’ve trapped stray cats and it’s not that difficult to do. The strays we captured were found good homes. This incidence is a combination of ignorance and being clueless. I just hope for the kitten’s sake that he was a good shot…..

  16. “Spay and neuter your pets”, ..Bob Barker.

    I had occasion once of taking a mom cat and 5 kittens to a shelter.
    I did not check back on the outcome. OW OW OW !!!

    “Spay and neuter your pets” … David Blauw.

    This was an “Inhumane” officer.

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