A Facebook post revolving around how a cat “met his fate by a shovel” from a Charlotte city employee has gained much popularity across Atascosa County and animal activists. The Pleasanton Express investigated the incident by getting into contact with Charlotte Mayor Buddy Daughtry.
On February 4, the City of Charlotte received a call about a stray cat in a resident’s backyard. Charlotte city worker and animal control personnel, Theodore Guerrero responded to the call, properly taking care of the animal. A rumor then developed on social media about Guerrero involving animal cruelty toward the cat.
“I have been made aware of an incident involving policy and procedures of animal control with the City of Charlotte while maintaining the safety of animal control personnel,” said Mayor Daughtry on Monday afternoon, who reached out to the Pleasanton Express after conducting his investigation.
Upon arriving at the resident’s premises, Guerrero was pointed toward the back of the property where the animal lay unable to move while the resident stayed at the front of the property. According to Guerrero, the cat was severely injured as if run over by a vehicle with fluid running out of its body. For his safety, Guerrero used a shovel to carefully pick the cat up instead of his hands, placing it into a cage. He did not call Atascosa County Animal Control as the cat died within city limits before he could do so. The animal was then taken to a city facility where it was properly disposed.
“The City of Charlotte adopted the same ordinance as the county. However, my city workers are not peace officers, so they have the authority to dispose of an animal that has expired in our city limits,” explained Daughtry. “Should any of our workers catch an animal alive or injured, by policy and ordinance of the city and with the Atascosa County Animal Control facility, they are to transport that animal to the shelter. Should the animal then expire once at the shelter, the personnel there can advise on how to dispose of the animal.”
Guerrero has been described by multiple Charlotte residents, staff, and Mayor Daughtry himself as always going above and beyond to meet the needs of the city and its residents. In past city council meetings, Guerrero has been commended by the council for his work ethic and willingness to step up and be one of the only city workers to deal with stray animals. Charlotte Librarian, Marianne McGinnis has consistently thanked him and complimented Guerrero’s enthusiasm to help her with repairs at the library, especially when the building would flood.
“After having investigated and reviewed the incident, I have found that all animal control personnel have followed set city policies while maintaining safety in removing the animal. As the city workers left the premises still within city limits, the animal expired and was properly disposed of by Guerrero,” said Daughtry.
The Charlotte City Council will address the incident and city policies about stray animals on a residence at their next meeting this Thursday, Feb. 5 at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall.