Police investigating after Shoreline cat stolen from shelter, found mutilated in garbage

SHORELINE, Wash. -- A horrific case of animal abuse in shoreline. A cat, temporarily staying at a rescue shelter, was stolen and beaten to death before being thrown away with the trash.

For owner Rustam Yusupov, it's hard to even talk about.

"I just loved him, ya know?"

His 1-year-old Savannah cat 'Amari' -- nicknamed 'Quixote' by the staff - -was staying at Whisker City Cat Rescue, separated from his twin brother until owners finished their move or found the cat a new family.

"We all feel a tremendous amount of guilt because we felt so safe here," said April Brown of Whisker City Cat Rescue.

The shelter had just found a new home for the cat this week.

Tuesday night, the cat was sleeping in one of the shelters indoor/outdoor kennels, but when volunteers arrived Wednesday morning that padlock and gates were broken and the cat was no longer inside.

Workers first reported the cat stolen but later found the feline's body among trash next to the dumpster.

The specialty cat  was found with its skull crushed -- mutilated beyond recognition.

Volunteers think the decorative chair that was inside the kennel was used as a weapon.

"That cat did not have a chance. It couldn't get away."

King County sheriff's deputies found a strange note left behind--a message written on a yellow poncho.

"Homeless need homes, but not in my neighborhood," it read.

"And then it said Richmond Beach," Brown said of the note.  "And it was handwritten."

But the shelter is in Shoreline--three miles from Richmond Beach.

Shelter volunteers shared they have had cats stolen from them in the past -- but suspect that the cat may have been targeted for loud meowing from his kennel.

"I mean, I'm sorry I'm shocked."

Yusupov who kept the cat's twin, while trying to find new housing for Amari.  "I've seen a lot of stuff in my life but this is, like, shocking."

It's animal cruelty that police are investigating, similar to a case in Edmonds, where a toy poodle was found stabbed to death inside his own yard.

Though police say the cases aren't connected, it's hard to stomach for the owner who says Amari and his brother trained themselves to use the toilet and open doors.

"You`re not a human being, man," Yusupov said, alluding to whoever killed his cat. "It's like, you gotta be possessed to do this kind of thing to an innocent creature."

That's one of the reasons why the FBI originally started a national registry of animal abusers.

"Recently the FBI has even started a national registry of animal abusers. And this is really important," said Laura Henderson of Pasado's Safe Haven. "The FBI thinks it`s important enough to track animal abusers--animal abuse is a key indicator of future violence against humans."

Seattle Humane is offering up to $5,000 in rewards leading to the arrest and conviction of animal abuser. You're asked to contact the King County Sheriff's Office with information at 206-296-3311 and reference the Shoreline cat incident.