A U.S. Marine Corps sergeant accused of throwing a kitten into a wall last June pled not guilty on July 29 in San Diego Superior Court on felony charges of animal cruelty.
Fernando Pacheco, 27, allegedly caused the kitten to suffer a broken leg, head trauma, and bleeding from the nose and eyes, according to San Diego Humane Society spokesperson Candice Eley.
The incident occurred on June 11, 2009, in Midtown. Witnesses stated that Pacheco threw the four-month-old kitten a distance of 15 feet, across a patio and into a wall. Pacheco claims the kitten scratched or bit him. The cat’s owners claim they’ve incurred $5000 in medical bills for “Cullen,” who has made a full recovery.
The federal animal-cruelty charge was brought by the San Diego Humane Society after the animal hospital that treated Cullen contacted the animal advocacy group.
Pacheco is stationed at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego.