St. George teen accused of killing kitten with blow darts (WARNING: Graphic Image)

Posted at 2:47 PM, Jun 23, 2014

ST. GEORGE, Utah - A 16-year-old boy from St. George is facing animal cruelty charges for allegedly shooting and killing a kitten with a blowgun.

St. George resident Lee Webb found the cat outside his back door Friday morning. He said he'd seen darts in his yard before, but couldn't believe whomever was shooting them actually killed an animal.

"Domesticated animals shouldn't be done in like that," Webb said. "It's cruel and unusual."

Webb called St. George police who came and removed the small kitten, who had been shot twice through the skull with the blow darts.

Sgt. Sam Despain with the St. George Police Department said officers and animal control interviewed neighbors Friday evening, and quickly located a potential suspect in the case.

Authorities talked with a 16-year-old boy and said they "found probable cause" that the teen was involved in the incident.

The teen has been referred to the juvenile court and is now facing animal cruelty charges.

"It's a crime. It's a serious crime," Despain said. "We're glad that we were able to resolve this case and refer this juvenile to juvenile court and hopefully get this juvenile some help or counseling they might need."

Despain said they don't believe kitten belonged to anyone, but was a community cat that roamed the neighborhood.

The teen's identity has not been released.

Washington County reported a similar accident in February where a teen boy was accused of shooting a cat with an arrow.