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Old 04-29-2007
ctaco ctaco is offline
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Default Animal Control officers drowns cat

Bristol Animal Control Officer drowns injured cat......

Officer: Cat drowned at pound
By Jackie Majerus and Steve Collins, The Bristol Press

BRISTOL - A Bristol animal control officer left an injured cat to die in an outdoor pen at the city pound and later drowned it, according to a fellow officer who witnessed the killing.

Norman Fortier, the city's assistant animal control officer for the past seven years, resigned rather than face a disciplinary hearing last week, according to Police Chief John DiVenere. Fortier may face criminal charges.
Craig Tole, an animal control officer for the town of Plymouth - which rents space at the Bristol pound - said Tuesday he was feeding the dogs in his care about 12:30 p.m. on March 31, a Saturday, when he came upon an injured cat in an outside pen.
The cat had apparently been hit by a car and was in bad shape, said Tole. He said it was breathing heavily and bleeding a little from the face. It wasn't moving, he said.
Tole said he didn't know if it had been left out by an animal control officer or tossed by someone over the fence surrounding the pen.
Knowing that injured animals are supposed to be taken to the veterinarian, Tole called his stepfather, Mike Suchinski, another Plymouth animal control officer, and told him about the injured cat.
Suchinski, who also works at the Bristol Police Department, said he told Tole to phone the police to get the animal control officer.
After he made the call, Tole said, Fortier soon showed up.
Fortier, who declined to comment Tuesday, told Tole he didn't take the cat to the vet because it would have died before it got there, Tole said.
"He told me he didn't think it'd make it to the vet in time," said Tole, so Fortier left it in the outside pen to die.
It was at that point that Fortier killed the cat, using a dogcatcher's tool, according to Tole.
"He got a bucket of water. He used a snare to drown it," said Tole.
Stunned, Tole said he watched for a moment as Fortier put the snare around the cat's legs before leaving for another call.
"Once he put it in the bucket, I left," said Tole.
Tole said it would have taken only about 10 minutes to take the cat to the vet. If the cat had to die, having a vet euthanize it would have been a better "so it's not being tortured," Tole said.
Tole said he has pets of his own and didn't like what he saw Fortier do.
"I didn't think it was right," said Tole. He said he didn't often work with Fortier but had never seen such a thing before.
"Norm's a pretty nice guy," Tole said, but added, "He shouldn't be doing stuff like that. It was pretty upsetting."
Later, Suchinski said, he discussed the cat with Brian Skinner, another Bristol animal control officer, and the two of them reported it to the lieutenant on duty. Skinner could not be reached Tuesday.
Suchinski said he didn't even know about the drowning at that point. When he found out, he didn't like what he heard.
"I was a little angry," said Suchinski. "You just don't do that."
The law is clear on what must be done with an injured cat or dog, according to Suchinski and DiVenere.
"The statute says he has to take it to the vet," said Suchinski, and let the veterinarian decide whether the animal should be euthanized.
The only time any animal control officer is allowed to destroy an animal, said both DiVenere and Suchinski, is if it is a wild animal that appears to be sick or rabid.
"Then you're allowed to euthanize," said Suchinski. "You have to shoot them."
The chief said that Fortier admitted drowning the cat because it was "badly injured" by a car. He called the cat's wounds a "mitigating circumstance" that will have to be considered in deciding whether to bring criminal charges.
The chief said that he thinks that if a criminal warrant is issued citing Fortier, it will happen this week. He said the facts are not in dispute. The only issue is whether Fortier broke the law.
The cat's owner could not be identified, DiVenere said.
Bristol city Councilor Mike Rimcoski said that if it's true, an incident like this could "cast a shadow" over the "good name of the people of the city of Bristol."
Rimcoski, who said he'd reserve further comment until the police conclude their investigation, said, "I'm extremely disturbed by the reports I've gotten."
Fortier's resignation takes effect May 1, according to the city's personnel office. But DiVenere said that Fortier, who worked full-time, has already turned in his equipment and ceased working for the city.
Fortier is also one of the city's six elected constables. He has long been active in the city's Democratic Party.
Fortier worked an 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. shift, Tuesdays to Saturdays, at the Bristol Animal Control Shelter on Vincent P. Kelley Road. For the time being, an animal control officer is only available weekdays from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., when the pound closes.
Jackie Majerus covers business, economic development and nonprofit agencies. Contact her at or 584-0504 ext. 217.
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Old 04-29-2007
jenjen jenjen is offline
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And that other kennel keeper just stood there and watched him drown the cat, I would have just beat the crap out of him literally.
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Old 04-29-2007
jenjen jenjen is offline
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That was just plain stupidity, why not just take it to a vet, let them determine the cats faith, so lets go ahead and drown the cat. If you think about it, hes been there for seven years, this isnt his first time guarantee...
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Old 04-29-2007
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Its pretty sad when you meet people who think animals dont have terrified feelings like this one definately had.... He deserved to be euthanized peacefully and painlessly, not panicking without air at the bottom of the bucket....
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Old 04-30-2007
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Tole is a tool. He needs to be charged as well and lose his job while in the gray bar motel alongside the one that commited the cat. Eye for an eye isn't good enough for this guy!
I do this because I hate people.
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Old 04-30-2007
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Kelly I don't really understand? Didn't tole leave and then reported it. I don't see why he should be charged? I am I missing the point?

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Old 05-07-2007
ctaco ctaco is offline
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He was charged with two counts.... Hopefully the Judge will do something in this case
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Old 05-12-2007
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This poor cat had to suffer even more and at the hands at someone who is in the animal welfare field and is supposed to be protecting animals. I say eye for and eye.

"The greatness of a nation and it's moral progress can be judged by the way it's animals are treated".

"Saving just one pet won't change the world, but, surely the world will change for that one pet." You might be the only love they know in their life.

Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly

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Old 05-20-2007
KeepItWegging KeepItWegging is offline
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This ON SICK ACO,.. Maybe he needs have the same thing done to him!
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