Cat killers convicted in Clermont County - Cincinnati News, Weather, Sports from FOX19 NOW-WXIX

Cat killers convicted in Clermont County

By Stefano DiPietrantonio – bio |email|Facebook

BATAVIA, OH (FOX19) - In a Clermont County courtroom Wednesday, two men were found guilty of killing several cats.

Keegan Carney and James P. Combs II were found guilty of cruelty to animals for killing cats with a gun.

Back in April, at least seven cats disappeared in Clermont County.

"It was fun to them," said Goshen Township Police Captain Bob Rose. "But having been caught made them realize these cats were, in fact, loved by kids."

The cats were killed by 21-year old Keegan Carney of Wayne Township and his buddy, 23-year old James Combs II of Maineville.

"All the cats were killed with weapons, with a firearm," Captain Rose said. "Although they had purchased an aluminum t-ball bat that they were going to use to also kill these cats."

A judge found Carney guilty on 3 counts of animal cruelty Wednesday and the same for Combs, plus one additional count of unlawfully discharging a firearm.

"These guys indicated that they were sorry for what they did," Captain Rose said.

Rose said he saw a "light bulb" go off during his interviews with both men, who never gave a thought to families being sad.

"It hurts them," Rose said. "People love their cats, love their animals."

"There were people that were missing cats that we were never able to locate they were probably one of the victims of these cat killers," Rose said.

Carney told police he skins then tans the hides of vermin as a hobby.

"He'd tanned things," Rose said. "I think he indicated to me that he tanned a possum before."

"Both of these individuals had indicated to me that cats, there was no value in a cat to them, that they didn't respect that animal," he said.

The pair is out of jail for now and Rose said people should not be worried.

"I didn't see anything to indicate these young men were going to become homicidal or anything like that, with the cat, they found no value with it's life," he said.

Detectives will re-visit all the evidence then make a recommendation to the Judge, who will sentence Combs September 13th.

Carney's sentencing is being held until September 14th, so he can undergo a psychological evaluation.

Both men face up to a year or more in jail, but Captain Rose said, due to the overcrowding in the Clermont County jail, and that this is their first offense, they could remain out, on some sort of probation. 

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