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North County Man Accused Of Torturing, Mutilating Cat

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NORTH ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO (KTVI)-- A north St. Louis County man is facing charges of mutilating and torturing his pet cat.  Avry Harris, 33, allegedly cut of his injured cat’s right paw sometime in late 2011 or early 2012, and investigators are offering few clues as to why the man might have done it.

It began with a tip to the Animal Cruelty task force from an anonymous neighbor somewhere near Harris’ home on Night Street in unincorporated St. Louis County.  That happened in January. Investigators arrived and were shocked by what they found.

“(They) observed a cat that had its front right leg sawed off,” Mark Perkins of the task force said in an interview.  “They later found out it had been sawed off.”

Perkins confirms the cat, named Tigger, had a previous injury to the paw, his right one, which Harris allegedly cut off.  He won’t say what reason Harris might have given those questioning him for doing it.  Then again, he doesn’t seem to think any reason would make much sense.

“I couldn’t believe somebody could actually hold an animal down and do that to them,” Perkins said. “The mentality of someone who could do something like this is beyond what I could imagine.”

FOX 2 went to Harris’ home seeking comment, but no one came to the door.

Neighbors we spoke to were unaware of what had allegedly happened.  The man next door, Abdulai Bah, had heard about the case on the radio, but had no idea it had happened just feet from his door.

“Surgery on a cat.  And I said what?  On a cat?” he recalled wondering upon hearing what happened.  “It’s weird, man.  I don’t want to believe it,” he said.

As for Harris, he calls him a friendly enough neighbor.  And he says he saw no evidence of an injured cat roaming around near the house.

“No.  We do have some stray cats once in a while, I do see them around,  but no I haven’t seen any cat hurting or something like that, no.”

Harris is charged with Animal Abuse/Torture/Mutilation While Animal Was Alive, according to the Missouri Courts database.  He was charged in late April, and turned himself in Thursday.  He was released from custody on his own recognizance.