San Jose: Cat killer gets 16 years for torturing, killing 21 cats

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"Living in a vehicle with feces, blood, urine, fur, and decomposing cat parts- what a mess", said Wesley Schroder, reading Farmer's statement. "Please send a strong and clear message that this community will not tolerate any animal abuse".

Farmer admitted 21 felony counts of animal cruelty - killing 18 cats and wounding three - along with misdemeanour battery and being under the influence. Pet owners celebrated the maximum sentence, though Farmer's attorney says he could be released in about 4 years. Stine was surprised when McKimmie said her cat went missing the same morning as his 16-year-old orange tabby cat Chablis, who still has not been seen to this day.

His lawyer has said that he was on methamphetamine at the time of the crimes. Under the conditions set by Chatman, he will not be allowed to own, care for or live with an animal for 10 years.

Farmer will not have to register as a sex offender as Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Sharon A. Chatman concluded that there was not sufficient evidence that Farmer had sexually abused the animal, reported the Mercury. Other conditions include mandatory drug testing.

He was found sleeping in his auto in October that year with a dead cat in the centre console and chunks of fur elsewhere in the vehicle.

One woman, who had let Farmer stay with her and her son, testified that she had seen him tie up her cat's hind legs and repeatedly swing it against the wall of her home.

A cat that escaped from his clutches was later treated by a vet for a "bite that was not an animal bite, as well as the bleeding head injury", local resident David Stine said. Ellis also argued Friday that Farmer presented a "phenomenal risk" of re-offending.

"It's still painful to come home knowing GoGo isn't waiting for us", she added.

"You can't torture a dead cat", she said.

Audience member Gayle Goodson agreed, but said that as a result of the case, the group will explore the possibility of setting up an animal abuse registry in California, similar to the sex offender registry.

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