Washougal 17-year-old arrested for allegedly running over, killing cat

By Emily Gillespie, Columbian breaking news reporter

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Washougal police arrested a 17-year-old boy for allegedly driving a car at a cat, hitting and killing the animal last week.

Anonymous tips led police to the juvenile, whose name was not released. The boy was taken into custody Wednesday on suspicion of first-degree animal cruelty, but he was later released to his parents, according to the Washougal Police Department.

On Sept. 13, police responded to a 911 call about 12:30 a.m. after witnesses saw a Ford SUV speeding in the 2700 block of H Street in Washougal. The vehicle traveled onto the curb and ran over a cat that had just crossed the road, according to police.

Witnesses heard a male voice yell “hit it, hit it” before the vehicle swerved to hit the cat, police said. Washougal police reported that, as the cat lay dying in the grass, the vehicle returned twice for the occupants to look at the animal.

When the boy was interviewed, he told investigating officer Kelly Anderson that he didn’t mean to run over the cat — that he was actually trying to avoid it by driving right at it, police said. The boy wasn’t able to explain to police why he didn’t just stay on the road or veer to the left.

Washougal police Sgt. Geoff Reijonen said that the other four male juvenile passengers of the vehicle have been interviewed and that no more arrests are anticipated.

The case against the boy will be forwarded to the Clark County Juvenile Prosecuting Attorneys Office for a charging decision.