Police are searching for a West Texas man after a video surfaced on social media of the man throwing a kitten across a muddy lot.
The Odessa Police Department issued a warrant for the man’s arrest after citizens called in to report the video (shown below), KOSA News reports.
The man has been identified as 25-year-old Christopher Joel Gonzales. In the video, which is believed to have first been posted to Facebook, he can be seen holding a beer and talking to the camera before he hurls a small white kitten across a lot.
Leslie Bueno told KOSA she saw the video on Facebook Thursday morning and immediately shared it with various animal advocacy groups in the area.
“I posted on Furry Friends Have Feelings Too, West Texas Diamonds In The Ruff, and I posted it all on my Facebook,” she said.
From there it continued to spread.
“People started sharing that and they just swept Facebook,” Bueno added.
The Odessa Police Department reportedly got several calls reporting the video after it spread.
Steve LeSueur, a spokesman with the department, didn’t name Buenos specifically, but said the video posts, coupled with the calls from citizens, led to the warrant.
“Social media played a huge role. It was immediately brought to our attention and an investigation immediately began,” LeSueur told KWES News. “The Odessa Police Department appreciates all the help from the public.”
Gonzales is wanted on a felony animal cruelty charge.
“So he could be facing up to two years,” LeSueur said.
The kitten in the video was recovered by Odessa Animal Control and taken to the local animal shelter.
“He was eating just fine, he was very friendly so I am hoping for the best, of course we won’t know until we get the report back from the vet,” Jacqueline Adimare, the shelter’s manger, told KOSA.
The kitten has since been taken in by a local animal rescue who will put him up for adoption after he recovers from any injuries.
Photo Credit: Screen shot from YouTube