By Lizzie May
A mother cat and her five-month-old kitten have been allegedly been shot and killed in attacks only two weeks apart.
Ani Powell, 29 from Holmsdale Grove in Barnhurst found her two-year-old cat dead in the garden with a bullet-like wound on her side, and only two weeks later found her five-month-old kitten profusely bleeding with the same injury.
The kitten was later put down after being rushed to the vets having difficulty breathing, with the injuries being described as ‘unsurvivable’ after finding a bullet had gone through several organs.
Firearms experts analysed the x-ray to find the bullet was likely shot from a high-powered air rifle which has the ability to be silenced when fired.
The two-year-old cat Vaeda was mother to five-month-old Cass, and both were in ‘perfect health’ prior to the alleged attacks.
Ms Powell, a care worker in Barnhurst said she put it on the Nextdoor app, and the vets got in touch with The Missing Paws Team who created an appeal for witnesses online.
An animal lover who lives alone with four other cats and two dogs, Ms Powell said: “You just want you, your family and everyone else to feel safe.
“Barnhurst is a lovely place but to be worried about the neighbourhood kids and pets being shot is just scary.
“It’s devastating. It’s heart-breaking. To know that they were just innocent, in the garden going about their day-to-day lives.
“They haven’t done anything wrong, and then their lives are just cut short because someone wants to cure their boredom.
“Vaeda’s death was at the start of half-term, and people have obviously come out of school and just decided to go and do something like this.
“This is pets’ lives, and it could become peoples’ lives – all it takes is one miss and you can devastate entire families.”
Both Ani and her neighbour have seen a ‘camp’ set up into some overgrown woods, just three minutes’ walk away from her home and where the cat-attacks took place.
The set-up sits in an overgrown area, right next to a field run by Danson Sports Football Club, and included a sofa, beer kegs and rubbish that gave the impression people frequented there often.
This alongside speaking to staff at the sports field who mentioned having ‘huge issues’ with youths has led locals to suspect it may be young people being bored with too much free time.
It was also reported by Danson Sports Football Club yesterday that youths were smashing glass and putting it into the mud where children play football.
Ani’s neighbour, Angela Alvarez said: “The owner is understandably devastated.
“The police have been informed but are limited on what they can do without witnesses so we are asking the public for help.”
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