Man accused of cutting kittens' tails off, charged with animal cruelty

The Marion County Sheriff's Office reports that on Monday, November 27th, 68-year-old James Steele Reid was arrested after deputies say he cut the tails off of five, four-week old kittens, despite being allegedly told by the owner to not touch them.

Deputies say the owner told them that Reid got into a verbal altercation with her husband on the farm where Reid volunteers. They say he then grabbed a pair of garden scissors, along with iodine, and told a co-worker that he was going to cut the tails off the victim's kittens. Deputies say a witness said he wanted the victim to "look at those cats and think of him."

A witness told deputies that soon after that, Reid was seen exiting the barn with the kittens' tail in his hands.

The Sheriff's Office says Marion County Animal Control Officers investigated the "tail docking" situation and found that it was done improperly due to the age of the kittens, the lack of anesthetic, and the wound not being stitched to assist with the healing process.

Reid has been charged with animal cruelty. Deputies say he posted his $2,000 bond last night.