- England -
On Friday, July 30, a former shopping center security guard and Royal Navy gunner, nicknamed the ‘Brighton Cat Killer’, was convicted in connection with a string of cat killings in the city.
Sussex Police said that after an eight-day trial, the jury at Chichester Crown Court found 54-year-old STEPHEN BOUQUET (pictured below) of 31B Rose Hill Terrace, Brighton, BN1 4JJ,
guilty of stabbing nine cats to death, injuring another seven and possessing a knife.
BOUQUET appeared at Hove Crown Court and Judge Jeremy Gold QC sentenced him to five years and three months imprisonment.
Police said in a press release: “The court heard that cat owners had incurred thousands of pounds’ worth of veterinary bills, but in nine cases this had been in vain and the animals succumbed to their injuries.”
The brutal and senseless attacks on the defenseless furbabies happened between October 2018, and June 2019.
Detective Inspector Chris Thompson said: “In late 2018 we became aware of a number of reports where cat owners believed their cats had been deliberately killed or injured. We needed to determine whether there was human involvement in these cases and submitted two cats for post mortem examinations by a specialist vet at the Royal Veterinary College. It was found that one of the cats had been stabbed by a sharp implement deliberately, but the other had too much surgical intervention to make a definite conclusion.”
Unfortunately, there were no witnesses, police did not have a face or a name for the monster. BOUQUET was able to continue attacking cats freely and undisturbed, while the families of the voiceless victims were dealing with gruesome discoveries and were left traumatized.
Police said the breakthrough came in May 2019.
On the evening of May 31, a 9-month-old cat named Hendrix had been stabbed with a knife and went back home bleeding heavily.
DI Thompson explained: “The owners discovered a trail of blood leading from the passageway to their home and then noticed a CCTV camera nearby. This had been set up by a neighbor whose own cat had suffered a similar fate, having been stabbed and killed a year before.”
Footage viewed by police showed BOUQUET “stooping to stroke the cat before taking something from his rucksack and making a sudden jerk towards it. Hendrix fled, but he later sadly died from his injuries.”
Two days after the attack on Hendrix, on June 2, police arrested BOUQUET.
A search in his residence led to the discovery of a knife with cat DNA on the blade and his DNA on the handle.
BOUQUET denied murdering and injuring the cats and claimed he had found the knife on his way to work.
BOUQUET made bail and police continued investigating.
Police said they were aware at that point they were relying on circumstantial evidence and the footage from the surveillance camera.
However, as the investigation progressed, investigators found corroborating facts that provided police with a case which was submitted to the Crown Prosecution Service and that authorized the 17 charges against BOUQUET on December 22, 2019.
Police listed and elaborated the evidence in a press release.
Voice For Us firmly believes that law enforcement agencies and humane societies worldwide ought to promote continuous campaigns aimed at cats parents to educate them and make them aware of the hazards cats face when they are left to roam outside unsupervised.
Some people may say: “My cat goes by the door and starts meowing, what can I do?”
Some people said to me: “I do not want to take the wild out of my cat.”
I beg you, talk to professionals to find ways to entertain your furbabies so that they do not feel the need to go outside.
You would not allow your human babies to be outside unsupervised, why not be just as protective with your furbabies?
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