Grandchildren Fail To Clean Rooms . . . So Grandmother Kills Their Cat and Four Kittens With Hammer

josephine-bellThere is a deeply disturbing case of Illinois where Josephine Bell, 71, is accused of killing her granddaughter’s cat and four kittens with a hammer to teach her grand kids a lesson for not cleaning their rooms. The case again raises the question of the proper punishment for cruelty to animals separate from the obvious abuse of this 13-year-old child.

The trauma for the granddaughter must have been incredible when she opened a freezer to retrieve a snack only to find the dead bodies of her cat and kittens. She texted a relative and police were called.

When police arrived, Bell explained that the kids refused to clean their rooms so she apparently considered massacring all of the pets in the house to be a proper and logical response.

She is charged with Aggravated Animal Cruelty. Illinois has one of the more protective laws but it is still only 1-3 years in jail. However, the police say that, given her lack of criminal history, she will be likely allowed to walk with a fine and probation. I am surprised that she was not also charged with child abuse in this circumstance. I find it astonishing that she could savagely kill these animals and torment these children and not spend time in jail.

Notably, the week before the family dog was taken from the home out of concern for its well-being.

What do you think? Is probation enough? Should her age be a determinative factor in avoiding jail time?

38 thoughts on “Grandchildren Fail To Clean Rooms . . . So Grandmother Kills Their Cat and Four Kittens With Hammer”

  1. This woman is one of the most disgusting examples of humans. That girl will be scarred for life. Seriously. It’s sick sick instances such as this that stay with a person for the rest of their life. Yes, jail time is perfectly appropriate for this horrible woman. One of the many things that is wrong with the human species is they have elevated themselves into something “divine” and special in this universe deserved of rights and privilege beyond what other living species deserve, somehow superior to all. Yes, carnivores will eat other living animals, but they won’t kill something out of spite and then plant it in a refrigerator so as to scare the life out of their own kin. People should learn that the universe considers them no more “special” with “special rights” than just another bacterium.

  2. oh yeah…look at this beaut…where did this charmer drift in from…Patton State Hospital material…

  3. The girls mother should be charged with child endangerment, she couldn’t get a baby sitter, where are the parents, she didn’t know her mom was nuts

  4. “Tough crowd, I tell ya, tough crowd.'” Rodney Dangerfield

  5. And publicize the execution extensively! Maybe it will make an impression on cruel, sadistic people like her and get them to clean up their . . . behavior. Using a hammer in this case would be important.

  6. She belongs institutionalized for the Criminally Insane.

    This type of Animal Abuse and Child Abuse Should be a Felony and this woman should not be allowed to be at large.

    This is the kind of thing that Satanists do to Children. This grandmother shouldn’t be at large. She should be locked up for the rest of her life.

    This is one of the worst kinds of crimes next to murder that anyone can inflict.

    I believe this behavior is incurable without drastic interventions and possibly psychosurgery measures.

  7. My opinion: Execute her . . . with a hammer. Yeah, I love cats far more than people like her.

  8. I don’t get the “given her lack of criminal history”. What if she robbed a bank? I don’t think her “lack of criminal history” would provide a get out of jail free card for that, so why should it for torturing and murdering innocent animals and inflicting pain and suffering on her grandchildren? She needs to be banned from having any animal and her children need to keep the grandkids away from her and if they won’t – CPS needs to step in. Next time she might take a hammer to the kids. She obviously believes in punishment – let her feel some.

  9. I understand the fundamental difference between pets, livestock and hunted animals. Myself and a few others were merely pointing out some people have this LaLa view about animals. And, the City of Tijuana closed all the Chinese restaurants after several places were found serving cats and dogs. This was just last month. So, there’s that.

  10. @ Shannon

    I am sorry for your and your daughter’s circumstances. There is always an exception to a generalization.

    I base my opinion on what I personally know of people, people I know personally and what I see happening around me. Generations of children too busy, too irresponsible, too self absorbed, too substance addicted to raise their own children. Grandparents or other relatives taking in those children…..with government subsidies in many cases. It is good that the children are taken from the custody of their drug addled parents and hopefully will be better off. I have my doubts.

    I’m standing firm in my conviction. Barring accidents or other things beyond your control such as yours, if you have raised children who are not responsible adults, who are addicts: you didn’t do a good job and while many people say “past performance is not a predictor of future performance”, it is a pretty good indicator. One that I used often in assembling a portfolio of investments. Past performance cannot be ignored. It is history and if we don’t learn from history we are doomed to make the same mistakes over and over.

  11. Aridog:

    When I was in college, one of my TA’s was studying wolves. She said that a den of wolves was nearby to a campsite in Alaska, unbeknownst to the campers. They had no idea that an entire pack of wolves was so close. After the den was abandoned, the TA found all sorts of “toys” pilfered for the cubs – chewed shoes, blankets, balls. So not only were they nearby, they were sneaking into camp at night to steal toys for their young, all without ever being discovered.

    What was unfortunate during one of her trips to various wolf territory was that well-meaning people who lived near national parks were feeding the dear during the winter because they didn’t want them to starve. That would bring the deer down out of the park, and it inflated their numbers far above what the habitat could sustain without supplemental feeding. That drew the wolves also out of the park, and close to human habitation, where they were shot every year. Eventually, the wolf pack was almost completely wiped out, they stopped feeding the deer, and they starved because they were too many.

    They also had to euthanize a coyote once who had lost two legs. As soon as they shot it, its mate shrieked and ran out of the bushes to his body, right in the middle of all the people, and she didn’t want to leave. Her grief was palpable. They had no idea she was hiding so close, watching. It is true that wolves and their relative have very tight social structures.

    Wolves are so huge and physically capable of harming a human, and yet attacks are extremely rare.

  12. Whenever I go to a 4H show, I see girls crying in the stalls with lapdog steers cuddling them with their heads in their laps, and they knew from the beginning that their animal would go to auction.

    @ Karen.

    Yes. This is why I steered my daughter away from raising a lamb. I knew that she would not be able to separate herself from loving the animal as a pet. This is a good thing in a person and I am proud of her loving soul. It is not so good as a farmer or rancher. Know thyself.

  13. DBQ:

    “Second, it isn’t a far reach to think that this callous abuse of animals won’t or hasn’t already extended to the children. There is physical abuse and then there is mental abuse. I wouldn’t be surprised if the children haven’t experienced both long before this incident.”

    I agree. Someone who would kill kittens with a hammer just to make a point to a child was likely not an ideal caregiver. I hope that there is an investigation into that aspect.

  14. omartyg: That is why I think it is a mistake to allow a child to make a pet out of livestock destined to be slaughtered. People who raise animals for food need to explain to kids from the start which animals are going to go.

    Whenever I go to a 4H show, I see girls crying in the stalls with lapdog steers cuddling them with their heads in their laps, and they knew from the beginning that their animal would go to auction. It’s definitely good to see how our food is made, and that meat is not born in a plastic wrapper. In my personal opinion, humans are healthiest eating as the omnivores they evolved to be. It is possible to be a healthy vegetarian, harder as a vegan, but you have to really know what you’re doing.

    I raised all of my own flock of organic hens from chicks, and they all come when I call them. My son is currently raising 2, and they’ve imprinted on him and follow him everywhere. It’s absurdly easy to tame a chicken, and being flock birds, they are very sociable. I think I could raise meat birds, but they would have to be in a separate pen and I wouldn’t make pets out of them. Plus I’d probably be a weenie and make my husband process them, at least the first part.

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