Social Question

john65pennington's avatar

Would you have arrested this juvenile? (see inside).

Asked by john65pennington (29212points) October 1st, 2011

Fire Department received a call on a hung cat in a tree. I was close and curious and stopped by the location. The cat was not in the tree, but had jumped down and went back into the owners house. Their son, age 13, stated he hated that cat and wished that it were dead.
He not only made his wish, but he followed through with it. You guessed it…..he nuked the hated cat in the kitchen microwave. That was a mess. Son was arrested for animal cruelty and taken to juvenile detention. Question: should this child have been simply arrested or taken for physcological examination?

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22 Answers

Berserker's avatar

I’d certainly consider psychological examination, yeah. I think you’d have to arrest him though, indeed. How much does a police officer decide what happens to the kid, beyond arresting him? If I was the judge or whatever, I would send him to a shrink, for sure.

chyna's avatar

If arresting him was the only way to get him help, then yes, it would’ve been the right thing. You don’t say what the parents were doing, but if it had been my kid, I probably would have wanted him taken away from me before I did something I would regret.

Berserker's avatar

@chyna Good point. Checking out the parents and what goes on in the household would have to be done, too. You gotta be pretty fucked up to do that to an animal.

GabrielsLamb's avatar

Deffinately psychological counseling. There is evidence of abuse almost always when children torment or hurt animals or other younger children. It isn’t a natural instinct, it is a fruestration vent mechanism for whatever the heck it is that is being done to that now abusive child. The level of the abuse on the child, reflects within the level of the way it is taken out on the more helpless creature. He is merely trying to say something in demonstration that obviously can’t be spoken out loud for whatever reason.

Someone is really hurting that child, that child has no voice, no outlet, and no help, and if they institutionalize him now… Society will later on be introduced to yet another; nameless, faceless, numbered psychotic criminal who will undoubtedly be in and out of the prison system for the rest of his life.

It amazes me the level of stupidity in the court system and the complete and total lack of mental health where and when it is necessary to PREVENT lifetimes of suffering mental illness.

That is a cry for help… a bad one, and no one can ever see the life of the child through the life of the animal in these instances.

This is very primal, rudamentary behavior in exebition.

He’s NOT a monster… But he will become one if people are unable to see the forest for the trees. *Or the child for the cat that is.

Pandora's avatar

Ahh! The nurturing of a serial killer.
Yes there is a chance that his home can be abusive but at 13 he knows what he was doing was wrong. If he doesn’t, than he is suffering from some mental illness. I grew up knowing boys who liked to be cruel to animals for kicks and giggles. They knew full well that it was cruel. They didn’t grow up in abusive homes nor grow into serial killers. They were just jerks. They thought it funny. Although I will say, I don’t remember hearing of any killing the cats. They were just bored bullies.
But I think its a whole new level of crazy when you kill an animal cruely. He knew at 13 that it would suffer a great deal and die. I’m sorry but I can’t help but wish this kid get his ass kicked royally for this. This is beyond cruel. Yes, he should be punished.

GabrielsLamb's avatar

@Pandora “Just jerks” Did you see their privacies and often very secrative home environments close enough to be able to gauge that for certain? Or are we generalizing to specify just to prove a countered point?

My brothers did this too… They were, on the outside, to anyone who may have lived around us or befriended them, otherwise normal human beings. Just some of the guys as the sayig goes.

But if I told you the REASONS they opted for this very unique and specific kind of “venting” *Like I said, the extent of the torment reflects the extent of the abuse… Maybe you might see things from a full spectrum stance?

I believe this to ALWAYS be evidence of abuse. ALWAYS… It isn’t just something people do. I do not believe that it is a natural response to torment living things.

ucme's avatar

Fact: This is how Dahmer started out on his path to hell, killing/dissecting family pets.
Conclusion: Psychological examination is in order.

Pandora's avatar

@GabrielsLamb I grew up a tom boy surrounded by boys in the neighborhood. You knew who was in an abusive family and who where the ones just craving attention. The boys I grew up with were the ones craving attention. Parents too busy to care what they were doing. Kids often know better than anyone what is going on in their friends homes. I knew two kids who grew up in abusive homes. One was a friend of ours till he passed and he would never harm an animal and the other one had just moved into the neighborhood and started the animal cruelity thing. Thing is that he wasn’t alone. He got other boys to think it was wussy to back away from being mean to animals. He was the leader and they followed and thought it was uncool to say anything. One day they tried to get me to join (since they considered me one of the guys) and I told them all that I would tell their folks if they didn’t stop. Not everything kids do has something to do with their upbringing.
I’ve known people who grew up in abusive homes who turned out to be the total opposite of the life they were shown. It just wasn’t in them to be cruel.

GabrielsLamb's avatar

@Pandora Yuppers! Now that you elaborated I understand a little better, I apologize… I assumed that you were saying all boys do this and that it’s okay… I read fast and miss things sometimes. KUDOS! and sorry to have jumped to conclusions.

GabrielsLamb's avatar

@ucme I carefully watched that interview Dahmers parents gave… Those two were in SUCH damn denial.

You could feel the creepy weirdness rise up out of the television. See, that is what I am saying, Abuse is very seldom ever expressed, even after damage is done and they lost their son in such a horrific way to their own garbage that even then their own guilt didn’t come to rescue them from by honest confession.

There was something inherently wrong with those two, but many people don’t SEE those things unless they are demonstrated.

Well… I think little Jeffy demonstrated quite well… I actually feel bad for him that no one ever knew, and no one ever helped him to the horrible extreme of that end result.

chyna's avatar

@GabrielsLamb “Little Jeffy”? You were friends!? :-)

Tbag's avatar

Psychological examination for sure! To come to think of it, my uncle was crazy as well when he was 15. My mom says that one night he came angry and his face was scratched like crazy. Apparently he had a fight with a cat! So… what he did after that is went outside, grabbed that cat and the next thing you know my uncle hanged the cat in the garage!!!

filmfann's avatar

I would think that, along with the arrest, the boy would be evaluated for psychological problems. The court handling the arrest will probably recommend it before trying him.

OpryLeigh's avatar

He definitely needs some kind of mental evaluation but that doesn’t mean he shouldn’t have been arrested and sent to juvi. In my opinion, mental problems or not, such an act is pure evil. @GabrielsLamb Whilst I agree that some people that abuse animals so cruelly may have been abused in the home in some way, I certainly don’t believe that everyone who does has. I also don’t believe we should excuse anyone who does such a thing simply because they may have been abused themselves. It is no excuse to deliberately do something that you know will cause an animal (or person) a great deal of pain and, whilst I agree that counselling is essential to get to the bottom of it, I am not going to feel any sympathy for such a person. People need to take some responsibility for their actions rather than using a troubled childhood as an excuse to do unspeakable things.


They should lock him in a cage with a hungry tiger. That would be a great equalizer. Lol.

Sometimes all the psychological counselling in the world won’t change a thing. If I had my way, I’d lock the kid up for a long time, and when he’s released, have him closely monitored for the rest of his life (and make him submit his DNA to a data bank) to make sure he doesn’t act out his violent tendencies on people. If he falls on his face and does something bad again, lock him up for the rest of his life.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

If arresting him is the quickest way to get him some psychiatric help, yeah.

Growing up, I only ever knew a few kids who were cruel to animals and they both grew up to be abusers of people and lifetime criminals.

HungryGuy's avatar

I’d put him in a big slingshot and hurl him into the sun.

Bellatrix's avatar

What do you think @john65pennington? I would love to hear what you think as someone who has worked as a policeman and had to arrest people who carried out these sorts of crimes and perhaps those who went on to kill humans? What do you think should have happened to him and why?

GabrielsLamb's avatar

@chyna ROFLMAO Ewww no! But that being said… It is rather easy to dehumanize a killer without first seeing how they got that way. By saying it in those terms it hopefully makes people see and understand how the impact of this particular situation may very well one day turn little… whoever this kid is, into another Jeffrey Dahmer if it isn’t addressed.

It is easy for people in society to feel that because THEY would NEVER behave that way themselves that the best course of action is to punish and remove people who have from society with an out of sight out of mind mentality that is predominately fear based. But if we did that, eventually evolution itself would drag the best down into the worst because that is the way life goes.

If you don’t deal with problems the right way they almost kind of reincarnate themselves into another form and face. Right action I think ultimately is the point.

downtide's avatar

I think he needs both. Arrest first and psychological assessment whilst in juvi.

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