Scott Andrew Graham is under house arrest after admitting to and being convicted of steeling 30-40 cats from his Mesa, Arizona, neighborhood. He reportedly admitted to taking the cats, playing with them and then releasing them at another location, but angry neighbors believe he tortured and killed the cats, and that the public should be made aware.
On September 3, 2013, protesters with signs gathered outside Graham’s home. Graham was arrested in August 2012 when surveillance cameras showed him steeling a cat named Biscuit from the top of a car. Cats had been going missing in the neighborhood and three were found mutilated and killed. According to resident Ben Smith, in at least one case, “The tail was cut off, the legs were broken, the teeth were broken.”
A homeowner thought he might have caught the perpetrator on surveillance camera and showed it to police and representatives from the Humane Society. The video reportedly showed a man approach a cat, pet it and then grab it by the neck. That cat is thought to have been Biscuit. Graham, then 39, fit the description of the driver and the car seen in the video. Biscuit was later found dead by his owner Amy Kalis.
He was arrested and charged with theft, mistreatment of animals, and two counts of cruelty to animals. A search of the home where Graham lives with his parents and his car turned up clothes, gloves and car floor mats covered with cat hair. The officer also noted possible blood stains and ”odor of dead animal” emanating from the trunk of the car. Graham reportedly explained the evidence by saying that once, when he left the car windows rolled down, a group of cats got into the car and into a fight — to the death?
Residents don’t believe him. They believe he has been nabbing and torturing cats to death for the last five years.
Despite a petition from residents, the animal cruelty charges were dropped due to lack of evidence and Graham was convicted in July 2013 of theft. In addition to the sentence of house arrest, Graham was also sentenced to 36 months of unsupervised probation, a mandatory mental health evaluation and payment of hundreds of dollars in fines, as well as payment of restitution to Kalis.
After the sentencing Kalis told reporters, ”He destroyed the memory of him (Biscuit). Now I have the memory of a horrific image after identifying him of the crime against him.” She added, “I still believe he committed this crime against Biscuit, mutilated him and killed him.” Other neighboring former-cat owners suspect Grahams killed their cats too and want to educate and inform others in the neighborhood about the danger that they believe Graham poses to their pets.
Protester Jan McClellan told 3TV’s Jill Galus, “We’re out here to educate the neighborhood and the public. … We’re not forgetting about these gruesome crimes committed by Graham. … We’re not going away.”
They have another protest scheduled for Saturday.