Feline foul play? Neighbors fear someone is poisoning cats in Saginaw community

Neighbors fear other stray cats in the area, like this one, will also die. / Rob Zielesch

Update: May 19th, 11:10 a.m.

An NBC25 facebook friend asked us to look into the laws surrounding animal cruelty. You can find the full list of laws and punishments regarding animal cruelty here. One law that particularly pertains to this story is people cannot, "negligently allow any animal, including one who is aged, diseased, maimed, hopelessly sick, disabled, or nonambulatory to suffer unnecessary neglect, torture, or pain."

People who violate the animal cruelty laws can face jail time, fines, and community service.

Folks who live on 13th Street in Saginaw say they think a cat killing neighbor has poisoned a dozen cats.

They say they watched the deaths of eight cats last year and four this year. They believe the cats died after eating out of a dish filled with poison in a neighbor TMs yard.

"We saw Baby Gray eat from that, and he got sick and died, said Gloria Mason. The cat was just suffering, kicking, trying to walk, falling back down."

NBC25 tried to speak with the neighbor suspected by folks on her street in the feline foul play. She did not answer her door.

I don TMt know for certain that she is responsible, said neighbor Nancy Woods. But she did tell me she was going to kill the cats.

These neighbors say the suspect neighbor has called the police on them for feeding stray cats.

Neighbors say animal control officers told them it is possible the animals had distemper, but after watching them die, these neighbors are convinced they were poisoned. They called police, who told them more evidence is needed. They say they did not have the money needed for an autopsy to prove their theory. They are hoping someone in the community will help them pay for one, should these deaths continue.

If this is happening, it needs to stop, said Kevin Bentley.

Bentley says he has become attached to several neighborhood cats, and like some of his neighbors, fears for the lives of the cats that remain.

They don TMt need dangers from a human, said Bentley.

These cats got pain, like we have pain, said Mason. I think something should be done about it. It needs to stop.

These neighbors say the suspect neighbor has called the police on them for feeding stray cats. It is something they say they will continue to do.

"They go in the fields and catch mice. They don't hurt anything," said Mason.