Deputies: Man Froze Kittens in Sandwich Bags
One kitten is dead and three are at the Emergency Care Center At Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialist in Largo. The suspect has been charged with four counts of animal cruelty.
Eva Mulder was visiting 49-year-old Rodney J. Blanchard at his home when he asked her to get a beer out of the freezer. When she opened the freezer door, she didn't find any beer.
She found four kittens inside, wrapped in individual sandwich bags, on the bottom shelf.
According to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, Mulder tried to get the kittens out of the freezer before they died, when Blanchard allegedly pushed her and forced her out of his home.
Mulder returned home and immediately called authorities.
Pinellas deputies went to Blanchard’s home, at 7570 46th Ave. N., to conduct a welfare check. As deputies approached the freezer, they said they could hear the kittens meow.
Deputies arrested Blanchard and charged him with four counts of animal cruelty and one-count battery for pushing Mulder.
According to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, deputies gathered all four kittens and wrapped them in a blanket to warm them. They were shivering and infested with fleas.
One of the kittens, a female calico, was unresponsive and declared dead. The three others – all orange and white males – were transported to the Emergency Care Center At Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialist in Largo. They are believed to be about six weeks old.
An adult cat was found in the home unharmed. This cat is also in the custody of SPCA. Two other outdoor cats were found in the vicinity of the home. They were also unharmed.