Woman Gets Unique Sentence For Abandoning 35 Helpless Kittens

Written by: Adri Sandoval
Adri Sandoval is the Special Projects Manager for iHeartDogs and iHeartCats. Her work has deepened her love for animals, fostering a strong passion for rescue and animal advocacy.Read more
| Published on August 1, 2017

If you’re not already a fan of Judge Michael Cicconetti, you’re about to be. We’ve written about his creative sentencing with dog abusers, including the woman who had to sit in a dump after forcing her dog to live in squalor. And as it turns out, dogs aren’t the only companion animals that he stands up for!

When Michelle M. Murray dumped 35 kittens in two different parks one September night in Ohio, the judge wanted to give her a taste of her own medicine. She claimed that the kittens were left at her door and the local humane society refused to help – an accusation that they denied.

When the babies were discovered by park rangers several of them had upper respiratory infections, and sadly, nine of them passed away. The article states that the litters were traced to Murray by the ID collars they were wearing.

The empathetic Judge Cicconetti asked Murray to think about what it must have been like for the poor kittens. According to ABC News, he asked her:

How would you like to be dumped off at a metro park late at night, spend the night listening to the coyotes … listening to the raccoons around you in the dark night, and sit out there in the cold not knowing where you’re going to get your next meal, not knowing when you are going to be rescued?

So, he gave her a choice. The article reports:

Cicconetti gave Murray a choice between 90 days in jail for domestic animal abandonment or 14 days in jail, 15 days under house arrest, a $3,200 donation to the Humane Society a $500 donation to the park rangers who found the kittens and one night alone in the woods.

Murray opted for the latter. On the day she had to fulfill the overnight portion of her sentence, a park ranger dropped her off at a remote location in the woods with no food, water, gear, or means of entertainment – only the clothes she was wearing. She was only allowed to build a fire, due to freezing November temperatures. (The judge cannot legally put someone in danger.)

We hope that this cruel lady, who’s also a mother, learned her lesson.

If you love Judge Cicconetti and his “creative” sentences, check out what he had to say in this exclusive interview with iHeartCats!

What do you think about this unique sentence? Tell us in the comments below!

(h/t: ABC News)