A 22-year-old Orange City man is facing an animal cruelty charge for killing a family’s pet cat with a pellet gun. Volusia County Sheriff’s deputies arrested William Stroud (DOB: 11/6/90) on Friday, about two weeks after the incident was first reported to the Sheriff’s Office.
The shooting occurred on Nov. 9. According to witnesses, Stroud drove in front of a house on 6th Street near Orange City, pointed a pellet gun out the window of the vehicle and fired at the cat while it sat in the driveway. Stroud drove away as the cat scurried off, and the owners didn’t immediately realize that it had been struck by the pellets. But the cat failed to return home, and two days later one of the owners called the Sheriff’s Office after he found the cat dead in a sewer drain a few hundred feet from his house. He said his son had witnessed the shooting and had recognized Stroud as the culprit. Deputies initially searched for Stroud, but they ended up obtaining an arrest warrant because they couldn’t immediately find him. The deputy noted in the charging affidavit that the owners weren’t able to “give the cat proper medical treatment for his injury or humanely put it down because they were unable to locate it. Because of this the cat suffered unnecessary pain and death.”
The warrant was issued on Nov. 20 by Circuit Court Judge Margaret Hudson. Stroud was arrested Friday morning at his house and booked into the Volusia County Branch Jail in Daytona Beach on $3,000 bond.