It's been a miserable week for animals in New York City: last Monday a dog was shot at point blank range in the East Village, and on Thursday a carriage horse was frightened near Columbus Circle and had to be tranquilized. Today, a tipster has passed along a video of a man placing a lifeless kitten into a plastic bag after he allegedly slammed it against a pillar on a subway platform. "[The man] stated either 'it won't die' or 'it wants to die,' before quickly running off with the bag," the tipster says, calling the man's behavior "hideous."
The tipster, who asked to be identified by his Disqus ID, Deep State, says that he initially noticed the man "slamming a plastic bag with force against a pillar on the platform" for the Manhattan-bound R train at Woodhaven Boulevard in Queens. "It being the NYC subway system, I did not initially find this to be anything out of the ordinary. It wasn't until he opened the bag and dropped its contents onto the platform that I really took notice," he writes. "Out of the bag fell a tiny dying kitten, which he promptly reinserted into the plastic bag. I was able to catch that moment on video."
When asked what he was doing, the tipster said the man fled. No one else was on the end of the platform to witness what had happened.
ASPCA spokesman Bret Hopman says that witnesses to suspected animal cruelty should contact the organization's Humane Law Enforcement department by calling (212) 876-7700, ext. 4450, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by simply calling 911. "Please do not put yourself in danger," Hopman says. "Do not enter another person's property without permission, and exercise great caution around unfamiliar animals who may be frightened or in pain." The MTA's press office confirmed that riders should not hesitate to report any suspected animal cruelty to an MTA employee or a nearby police officer.
Hopman adds that it's best to taken down a "concise, written, factual statement" of what was observed, and be able to submit to authorities contact information for other witnesses. You may also submit a sworn statement to the police to summon the accused to court.