AKRON, Ohio – An Ohio man who pleaded no contest to killing his roommate's cat by throwing it against a wall has been sentenced to two years' probation.
The judge said Tuesday that prison time wasn't an option for 21-year-old University of Akron student Matthew McCullough. A state law mandates probation for the first offense of certain low-level felonies that are not deemed violent.
A new law last year elevated certain animal cruelty offenses from misdemeanors to fifth-degree felonies, but prosecutor Justin Richard says the cat's death was treated as a "property crime."
The Akron Beacon Journal reports that McCullough apologized at the sentencing. Attorney Reid Yoder said McCullough is "not a deviant."
The cat allegedly scratched and urinated on McCullough. Yoder called the killing a "momentary lapse of judgment."
Information from: Akron Beacon Journal, http://www.ohio.com