Kitten killing sparks controversy

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Reporter - Lauren Adams
Photojournalist - Jason Thomason

MCCRACKEN COUNTY, Ky. - Dozens crowded the sidewalks outside the courthouse Thursday morning. Some were strangers, united only through social media and a common goal.

"Animal cruelty will not be tolerated," animal advocate Misti Wagner said.

The group's protest was prompted by the Wednesday arrest of three Lone Oak teens. Law enforcement says the teens tortured two kittens before using an 11 pound rock to kill them. The teens, law enforcement says, also took to Twitter to showcase their actions.

Wagner says the protest was about sending a message, "I understand they're kids but we want to serve as an example to other kids, this isn't okay."

Animal control officer Chrystal George who helped investigate the case Sunday says she was humbled to see the support. On Thursday, she promised justice.

"We are not going to back down. We will prosecute," she said.

The teens are charged with animal cruelty. That is a misdemeanor charge that carries a $500 fine and up to 12 months in jail. However, because the teens are under 18 they will prosecuted through the juvenile court system. A fine is replaced with community service and the teens are sentenced to time in the juvenile detention center according to age. Each teen could serve up to 90 days there.

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