Sentencing Delayed for DC Man Who Declawed Kittens
Intolerable Cruelty to Kittens MemorialPublished February 12, 2013
Washington Humane Society
Many folks may recall a tragic event occurring in Washington D.C. last May, when Eric T. Gaskins, committed an act of cruelty so ghastly it would be impossible to forget. In order to preserve his furniture, Gaskins, a resident of Washington, D.C. took it upon himself to remove the claws of his daughter’s two kittens in his home. Officers from the Washington Humane Society, (WHS) were called in to investigate the case, according to the Washington Post.
In a report made by WHS personnel, upon their arrival at Gaskins’ home, the officers found two eight-week old kittens named Beta and Gamma so severely injured they were unable to walk. According to an affidavit filed by Daniel D’Eramo, a Humane Society Investigator, the kittens were brought to the local animal shelter by Gaskins’ sister. The kittens were then rushed to a local animal hospital.
Upon examining them, the veterinary surgeon concluded that during Gaskins’ crude attempt to remove the kittens’ claws, their nails had been torn out and all their toes were severely infected. Most of the bones in their feet and legs were also broken, possibly, according to the veterinarian, as a result of from their struggle to escape this inhumane and brutal torture.
Gaskins was arrested in September 2012, and released under the following conditions, ““Defendant may not own, possess, or maintain any domesticated animals.”
Scott Giacoppo, the vice president of WHS, with more than 20-plus years in the field of animal welfare said that this case was one of the worst accounts of animal torture that he had ever witnessed. Sadly the lives of these two baby kittens could not be saved. After veterinarians determined that the kittens’ injuries were beyond repair, they were both mercifully euthanized.
Gaskins pleaded guilty In the District of Columbia Superior Court last November to two counts of felony animal cruelty charges, according to the Examiner . His sentencing was scheduled for February 1, 2013.
But Gaskins and his attorney requested more time prior to sentencing in order to review the prosecutor’s report that contains sentencing recommendations and veterinary records concerning the kittens’ medical conditions. Had he been sentenced on Feb 1, he was facing up to 180 days in county jail and a $250 fine for each of the charges. Additionally he would have to pay a mandatory fee for a victim cause, ranging from $50 to $250.
Now we will all have to wait to learn about Gaskins’ sentence until February 22. I wonder what punishment lies ahead for him since I cannot wrap my head around how anyone in their right mind could perpetrate acts of cruelty that are so unfeeling, selfish and hard-hearted.
To prevent such cruelty from happening again, the Washington Humane Society has started a memorial fund aptly titled "Intolerable Cruelty to Kittens Memorial." Check out the site here and donate today.