WPD makes arrest in animal cruelty case

17-year-old Washougal boy charged with Class C felony

A Washougal teen has been arrested on charges of animal cruelty.

Through anonymous tips called into the Washougal Police Department, a 17-year-old boy was identified and arrested on charges of first degree animal cruelty following an incident reported to police last week.

On Sept. 13, at approximately 12:30 a.m., witnesses called 911 after seeing a late model 2000’s white Ford SUV with gray trim, speeding eastbound in the 2700 block of “H” Street in Washougal. The vehicle then drove up on a curb and ran over a cat that had just crossed the road. The witnesses heard a male yell “Hit it, hit it!” seconds before the vehicle swerved and drove up onto the curb, hitting the cat.

As the cat lay dying in the grass, the vehicle returned twice to look at it. Witnesses stated the vehicle was occupied by 3 to 4 teen males.

The suspect, a male juvenile, was taken into custody Sept. 18 and transported to the Washougal Police Department. He was later released to his parents.

The juvenile told investigating Officer Kelly Anderson that he didn’t mean to run over the cat. He said he was actually trying to avoid it by driving right at it. According to a press release, the driver wasn’t able to explain why he didn’t just stay on the road or veer to the left.

The investigation revealed that at the time of the incident there were four male juvenile passengers in the SUV, in addition to the driver.

The case will be referred to Clark County Juvenile Court for criminal charges against the driver. First degree animal cruelty is a Class C Felony in the State of Washington.

The owner of the cat has not been identified.