A teenage boy has been questioned by police investigating the death of a cat – reported to have suffered a ‘crushed skull’ – at a house in Co Armagh.
A local political representative said the cat died after a “senseless act of cruelty”.
DUP MLA Carla Lockhart told Belfast Live: “Generally we are a country of animal lovers and right minded people will be horrified at the suffering caused to the cat.
“We need to ensure that the punishment does fit the crime in these circumstances and that those who are found guilty face the full rigours of the law.”
A 16-year-old had appeared in court in Lisburn early last week on a number of offences, it has emerged.
These include assaulting police and disorderly behaviour.
The offences were alleged to have been committed on Saturday, March 30, at a house in the Lurgan area.
The teenager has additionally been questioned by police investigating other alleged offences.
A PSNI Craigavon spokesperson said: “A young male was arrested on suspicion of an array of offences, some of which he has been charged with (disorderly behaviour, 2 x assault on police, common assault and possession of an offensive weapon).
“The other offences he was arrested on suspicion of, for which he is currently on bail to allow further forensic enquiries, include arson with intent to endanger life, 2 x criminal damage, and causing unnecessary suffering to animals, namely a cat.
“The latter understandably caused particular concern due to the nature of the post mortem results disclosed in court.
“What we can assure you is this: where there are any allegations of cruelty to animals, we will investigate them thoroughly and robustly. In this district particularly, we have shown that time and time again.
“In this case the investigations to date have included a post mortem on the cat, complete with toxicology reports. What is clear from that is that the cat died a violent death, with significant injuries to its skull. Who or what is responsible remains the subject of investigation.
“Whilst that goes on, the protection of the public and indeed other animals is a priority and, as such, restrictive and stringent bail conditions are in place which allow us the best chance of affording that safety to everyone.
“Due to some more sensitive background to the incident, and the age of the boy involved, we won’t be giving further detail on it at this stage.
“Please don’t add speculation or potentially damaging comments to a sensitive and ongoing investigation.”
*Main image for illustration purposes only.