A disturbing investigation in Provo, Utah has led to the arrest of a 26-year-old man now facing felony animal cruelty charges for allegedly torturing and burning a live kitten. According to a news release posted Thursday on the Facebook page of the Provo Police, Spencer Jens Pedersen, was booked into the Utah County Jail on Wednesday in connection with the investigation of three felony counts of cruelty to animals, torture of a companion animal and misdemeanor drug charges. Authorities state he may have killed or tortured as many as 11 cats and kittens.
The investigation began on October 15, when officers went to Pedersen’s home near 1300 N. 300 W and found a kitten on fire in the gutter. The kitten was alive, but later had to be euthanized because of its suffering. Neighbors stated they had seen the suspect in possession of kittens and roughly handling them. One of the neighbors told police he had seen dead kittens in Pedersen’s dog run.
After authorities obtained a search warrant, they found another dead cat in the trash along with trace amounts of heroin and drug paraphernalia.
“That cat was taken to a vet and found to have broken back legs, broken jaw and blown ear drums. The vet stated that the injuries were that of blunt force trauma,” the affidavit stated.
According to Fox13 News, police think Pedersen had been finding the kittens online stating this is one of the worst cases of animal abuse they have seen. Pedersen even had a picture of one of the dead kittens on his phone. Investigators have linked Pedersen to a November 6 incident involving abuse of another cat in the same area.
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