Is this New York judge correct in the cat kicking trial of Andre Robinson?

King the kicked cat recovering at ASPCA
King the kicked cat recovering at ASPCA. Photo: ASPCA. Nice photo.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

You may remember the unpleasant story about a stray cat called King who was kicked by a young man, Andre Robinson. It was well covered in the online media and on this website. The cat was kicked over a hedge, about 10 to 20 feet apparently. King was eventually re-homed having been looked after by the ASPCA.

The ASPCA treated the cat’s injuries in their animal hospital after the attack for, “tissue injuries and bruising.” This is reported on their website.

Coming to the trial of Andre Robinson which is now only just taking place, it is reported that the Brooklyn judge has thrown out the prosecution’s case on the basis that she was not satisfied that the cat had been injured.

As I understand it, the prosecutors were prosecuting under § 353. “Overdriving, torturing and injuring animals; failure to provide proper sustenance”, which makes the injury of either a wild or tame animal a class A misdemeanour. The law is wider than that but I’ve selected the relevant parts of it.

Incidentally, the prosecutors could not proceed on the basis of aggravated cruelty to animals because there was no intention to cause serious physical injury, on the face of it.

In any case, there appears to be conflicting information regarding this trial because as stated the cat had suffered bruising and tissue injuries as reported by a reputable organisation and yet the judge (a Supreme Court justice, incidentally) has concluded, on hearing the evidence, that:

“Maybe it was injured, or maybe it’s fine,”

As a result the judge has ordered that the original charge for a class A misdemeanour be dropped and allowed a lesser charge to proceed which is a class B misdemeanour for attempting to injure the cat.

Apparently, a veterinarian at provided evidence in support of the prosecution’s case that the cat had travelled sufficient distance to suffer pain and injury but had not actually stated that the cat had been injured and recorded that fact. Although, as mentioned, the ASPCA had done that.

I think this case is interesting because it does highlight the difficulties in mounting a successful prosecution for cat cruelty.

Fortunately, if the prosecution proves successful under the lesser charge, Andre Robinson faces a maximum jail term of 90 days. I would be very surprised if he receives such a sentence and indeed it is certainly quite possible that he will get off. This will annoy the many supporters of King who are keen to see justice done.

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6 thoughts on “Is this New York judge correct in the cat kicking trial of Andre Robinson?”

  1. Laws that purport to prevent and punish animal cruelty will never be sufficient until animals are no longer viewed as “property” in the eyes of the law. As long as animals are viewed as property (just as certain groups of people once were viewed as property,” no laws enacted will thwart animal abuse or subsequently punish the abuser. People will never be held accountable because in the eyes of the law, property can be dispensed of at will. The long held view of animals as “property” must change if we are to see any change in consequences for those who brutally abuse and neglect animals. Until this happens, abusers will continue to get off with a slap on the wrist.

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  2. I’m glad King the cat got a home! But the people that do this kind of thing, will just try again because they got away with it the first time (actually he has a criminal record already). What’s the point of laws? If they get broken by the likes of this heartless douche!!! Maybe the judicial system needs to start cracking down on these low life scum bags. Sure…it may be an animal the person hurt (but…hey…that’s how serial killers start out)… the next time: what? a child, an elderly person? When is enough cruelty enough???

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  3. Ofcourse, the bastard will get just a slap on the wrists.
    But, let’s not forget the wonderful outcome for King.
    He’s been adopted by gentle giant “hunka-hunka” Chris Sorda and gets to sleep with him every night.

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