Police charge Naugatuck man with animal cruelty

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Christopher Monteleone

NAUGATUCK — Police charged a 25-year-old borough man with first-degree animal cruelty Monday after they say he killed a cat.

Police responded to an apartment on North Main Street at about 11 a.m. for a report of a domestic dispute between Christopher Monteleone and a woman. The two were arguing over the death of the woman’s cat, Precious, according to court documents.

Monteleone told police he was drinking the night before, started playing with the cat and was throwing her in the air, according to court documents. He told police he didn’t mean to kill the cat, according to court documents.

Monteleone broke the cat’s hip a couple of months ago, court documents state. The injury occurred when he was spinning the cat in circles, he told police, and he hit the cat on the side of a dresser by accident.

The woman told police the cat had been afraid of Monteleone ever since and she asked him to leave the cat alone.

On Monday, the woman woke up at about 1:30 a.m. and saw Monteleone holding the cat, before going back into her room, according to court documents. She went back out to check on the cat and told police Monteleone was trying to hide the cat under a bed.

The woman told police the cat was almost in a catatonic state, according to court documents. There was blood on the toilet and a sink in a bathroom, and bloody tissues and clumps of cat hair in the toilet, according to court documents.

Police took the cat’s remains to the University of Connecticut necropsy lab for evaluation, according to police.

Monteleone, who had scratches on his hands, told police he believed the blood in the bathroom was from him. He told police the cat came down with its claws out while he was throwing her in the air. He told police the cat hair was from grabbing the cat, but he didn’t know how the cat sustained the injuries to her head.

According to court documents, Monteleone has a history of domestic violence toward the woman. Police also created a report with the state Department of Children and Families because two children were home at the time of last week’s incident with the cat.

Monteleone was arraigned Tuesday in Waterbury Superior Court, where he was released on a $25,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in court again on Jan. 14.