PETA Foundation Demands Jail Time, Psychiatric Intervention For Cat Killer

For Immediate Release:
27 August 2009

Sam Glover 020 7357 9229, ext 229; [email protected]

Hyde, Greater Manchester – This morning, the London-based PETA Foundation sent an urgent letter to Chair of Bench Kenneth Howard of the Tameside Magistrates’ Court calling on him to sentence 19-year-old Hyde resident and confessed cat killer Chloe O’Connor to the maximum penalty, permanently ban her from owning animals and require her to undergo thorough psychological evaluations followed by mandatory counselling at her own expense. O’Connor has admitted to shooting her neighbour’s cat, Trouble, in June with a crossbow. According to news reports, O’Connor had been drinking before she spotted Trouble and shot him through the abdomen. Trouble reportedly suffered from the wound for up to 30 minutes before dying. Sentencing is scheduled to take place in two weeks.

The group enclosed a report that details the strong connection between cruelty to animals and violence towards humans. The American Psychiatric Association identifies cruelty to animals as one of the diagnostic criteria for conduct disorders, and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation uses reports of these crimes in analysing the threat potential of suspected and known criminals.

History shows that serial rapists and murderers often have backgrounds that include incidents involving cruelty to animals. Child-killers Mary Bell, Robert Thompson and Jon Venable – as well as serial murderers Ian Huntley, Thomas Hamilton (Dunblane massacre), Fred West, Denis Nilsen, Ian Brady and Jeffrey Dahmer – all started out by deliberately harming animals.

“Anyone capable of this kind of violence poses a serious risk to human beings and non-human animals alike”, says PETA Foundation Charity Manager Suzanne Barnard. “Communities should be concerned when animal abusers are found in their midst. Research in psychology and criminology reveals a consistent pattern of cruelty to animals among perpetrators of violence towards humans.”

PETA’s letter to Magistrate Kenneth Howard is available upon request. For more information, please visit