2 Men Arrested for Allegedly Lighting Cat on Fire

Officials have arrested two men accused of setting a cat on fire.

Police say 21-year-old Tyrique Hall and 18-year-old Jose Sanchez set a cat on fire back on November 10 in the Olney section of the city. A woman told officials she spotted the cat on fire running down 3rd Street towards Wellens Avenue around 9:25 a.m. The woman also claimed she spotted Hall and Sanchez at the intersection and heard one of the men say, “I put a lot of fluid on it.”

The cat, named Campbell, was found at Wellens Avenue. He suffered from severe burns and is being treated at the PSPCA shelter hospital. Officials say his prognosis is good but due to the severity of his burns, he's expected to stay in the care of the SPCA for at least another month.

"It appears that this cat was probably burned over 60 to 75 percent of his body," said George Bengal of the PSPCA.

Officials notified Campbell's owner, Madelyn Rivera, who said the adopted cat ran away from her home during the late summer. Rivera had the cat microchipped which is how officials were able to identify her as the owner.

(Pictured: 21-year-old Tyrique Hall)

Rivera was thrilled when the SPCA told her they had found him. But her joy quickly turned to horror when they told her what happened.

"I'm hearing, 'Hey, we found Campbell,'" Rivera said. "I'm like, 'Oh, great!' And then it was bad news. What would possess someone to go and light a cat on fire?" 

Investigators say surveillance video from a store near where Campbell was found captured Hall and Sanchez.

SPCA officers secured an arrest warrant for the two suspects. On Tuesday, they announced they were both arrested. Both men are charged with criminal conspiracy, possession of an instrument of crime and animal cruelty. They could each face up to 10 years in jail if found guilty.

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