California Man Who Slew His Neighbor's Cat with a Bow and Arrow Is Sentenced to Three Years in Jail
"The world is a bad dog. It will bite you if you give it a chance..."
-- Joe Conrad, Victory
Finally, a cat killer has gotten his comeuppance.
Forty-seven-year-old Robert Eugene Brunner of the San Diego suburb of Vista was sentenced on September 17th to three years in jail for hunting down his neighbor's cat and pumping two arrows into his body. The force of the blows pinned the cat, Bill, to a tree where he was forced to remain overnight in excruciating pain as the life drained out of his savaged body. (See photo above.)
Alerted to Bill's fate by a ten-year-old boy from the neighborhood, owner Janeen Bubien retrieved his body and took him to a veterinarian who removed the arrows. Medical intervention was, unfortunately, too late and Bill died two days later on April 14, 2006. (See Cat Defender post of August 14, 2007 entitled "Grieving Owner Seeks Justice for Orange Tabby Named Bill That Was Hunted Down and Savagely Killed with a Bow and Arrow.")
This marks the second time that Bubien has prevailed in court. Earlier, she won a $2,500 civil judgment against Brunner and the presiding judge tacked on an additional $5,000 in order to enable her to relocate elsewhere. She is to be highly commended for going the extra miles in order to ensure that Brunner was brought to justice.
Cat-lovers are also indebted to prosecuting attorney Kate Flaherty for removing this monster from society and putting him behind bars instead of allowing him to plead to a lesser charge. Judge K. Michael Kirkman grievously erred, however, in giving him only thirty-six months in the can as opposed to the fifty-six that he was eligible for under the law.
Nevertheless, three-years in the pokey represents a marked improvement over what cat killers usually get which is pretty much limited to minuscule fines and probation. (See Cat Defender posts of January 17, 2006, March 9, 2007, and May 3, 2007 entitled, respectively, "Loony Virginia Judge Lets Career Criminal Go Free After He Stomps to Death a Fourteen-Year-Old Arthritic Cat," "Long Island Serial Cat Killer Guilty of Only Disorderly Conduct, Corrupt Court Rules," and "Principal Who Shotgunned to Death Two Kittens a Minnesota School Is Rewarded with Similar Post in Idaho.")
Even phony-baloney PETA is allowed to get away with its atrocities against animals. (See Cat Defender post of February 9, 2007 entitled "Verdict in PETA Trial: Littering Is a Crime but Not the Mass Slaughter of Innocent Cats and Dogs.")
Brunner claims that he murdered Bill because the cat was urinating in his yard, but that is a lie to conceal his inveterate hatred of cats. For instance, birds, mice, squirrels, and even drunken revelers regularly use private lawns as public toilets and yet homeowners never go after any of them with bows, arrows, and guns.
Down through history cats have been the most maligned and abused animals on the planet and the situation is only getting worse. Joe Conrad once likened the world to a bad dog that "will bite you if you give it the chance" and that pretty well sums up the predicament that cats and their guardians find themselves in these days.
Since it is clear that existing laws are not only too weak but too sporadically enforced to stop the abuse and killings, the time has come for all societies to recognize violent acts directed against cats as hate crimes and to punish the perpetrators accordingly.
Photo: KGTV, Channel 10, San Diego.