More sick cats found in shedThree more cats have been taken from the property of a Two Harbors man who pleaded not guilty in June to charges of cruelty to animals.
By: News-Chronicle, Lake County News Chronicle
Three more cats have been taken from the property of a Two Harbors man who pleaded not guilty in June to charges of cruelty to animals.
The cats, brought to Animal Allies in Duluth, were in a pole barn on Knife River property owned by Todd Stoehr, 68. In March, 20 cats were found living in Stoehr’s pole barn and 39 dead cats were found outside. That raid led to Stoehr’s Two Harbors residence, where 34 cats were found.
Duluth Township Chief of Police Shawn Padden and investigator Wade Hanson with the Minnesota Animal Humane Society rescued the cats last Thursday.
Padden said he received a tip from people attempting to remodel a trailer on the property that cats were in the pole barn again. Padden updated the search warrant and went in. The locked pole barn held three cats, all very sick, Padden said. “It’s a sad deal.”
“The ammonia stench was very high still,” Padden said. “There were still no signs of proper ventilation. That’s why we seized them.”
He said he will file some misdemeanor charges as Stoehr awaits a trial date. An Oct. 5 appearance in St. Louis County district court was postponed. Padden said he expects a plea agreement to be made and then measures can be taken to keep Stoehr from taking cats in. “We need to get him under some guidelines,” Padden said.
Stoehr said he wouldn’t comment on the case until it was resolved and referred questions to his attorney. He expected back in court in November.
The three rescued cats are being treated, but must be held for 10 days. Those interested in barn cats, which is the best situation for them, should call Animal Allies. The rescued cats are staying in an Animal Allies storage area until enough cats are adopted to create their room.
In June, Stoehr was charged with two counts of felony cruelty to animals, one count of misdemeanor maltreatment of animals and three counts of misdemeanor failure to adequately care for animals.