‘A sad situation’: Neighbors say cat colony is out of control

cat shooting

These two cats and five others are currently being boarded at Freeport Pet Clinic while Jennings, Crow and Stitt work to set up a new refuge for the cat colony.

Special to The Sun
Published: Thursday, September 12, 2013 at 01:43 PM.

At the Walton County Sheriff's Town Hall Meeting Tuesday night, Ashley Ribando, of Feline Friends of Destin, spoke on the behalf of Alley Cat Allies in regards to the Aug. 25 shooting of a feral cat in Freeport .

"We urge Walton County officials to charge the shooter with animal cruelty and prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law. The shooter’s actions are in direct violation of a Florida statute," read the statement prepared by Alley Cat Allies.

The cat, named Momma Cat by its caregivers, was part of a trap-neuter-return program, in which cats are spayed or neutered, vaccinated, and then returned to their colonies where they live out their lives.

Outraged when local police did not immediately prosecute the shooter — the police report read that "no criminal act was noted" — the caregivers called Alaqua Animal Refuge and Alley Cat Allies, a national advocacy organization for feral cats, looking to seek justice. WCSO responded by assigning Criminal Investigations Division to examine the incident. The investigation is done, but now the answer of prosecution lies with the district attorneys.

Cyndi Jennings and her boyfriend Mark Crow have been feeding the feral cats on Bayshore Drive since 2009, but have been trying to move the cats to their new neighborhood, about five minutes away.

Since the shooting, they have been trying to catch the entire colony and keep them on their property. They've spent thousands of dollars building an enclosed fence and house for the cats.

The residents on Bayshore Drive told The Sun, that the feral cats in the area are a big problem. And the few that Jennings and Crow care for are just the beginning

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