Animal rescues across Chicago are searching for a cat that escaped after a teen scalded it with steaming hot water just days ago in what’s being called a “disturbing” case of animal cruelty posted to social media.
Among the groups are volunteers from the Anti-Cruelty Society and Paws, armed with cages, blankets and food.
“We are out here hoping to find it,” said Dotty Cowles-Newton, field services manager for the Anti-Cruelty Society. “We were concerned for the cat and shocked.”
The incident was recorded and posted to Facebook Tuesday night.
Leon Teague, of the 6900 block of South Martin Luther King Drive, has been charged with one felony count of animal torture and one misdemeanor count of animal cruelty after a video was uncovered showing the 18-year-old luring a cat on a porch and dousing it with boiling water, according to police.
In the video a white cat with black spots can be seen near a blue litter box and a feeding tray outside on the rear porch of a home with someone behind the camera holding a black pot with hot water. The man in the video can be heard making noises to get the cat to come in his direction and then, once it comes close enough, burning the animal.
After being hit with the scorching water, the video shows the cat immediately begin to howl loudly before running for safety away from the porch.
The video was quickly shared across the social media site outraging animal rights groups across the nation and prompting the police investigation.
“It’s a message that we keep trying to get across that the violence we see in Chicago,” said David Dinger, vice president of operations at the Anti-Cruelty Society. “It starts here; it starts with dogs and cats and works its way to children and adults. None of them are isolated incidents so we have to attack it on all fronts.”
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