ATLANTA — Police are searching for a man seen kicking a cat across a gas station parking lot, like a football.
The video was slowed down for dramatic effect, then posted to social media. Atlanta Police released the recording of the incident Monday.
Animal Cruelty officials determined the incident happened July 1 in the parking lot of a Chevron gas station off Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in southwest Atlanta.
Now, the Atlanta Police Department is asking for help in identifying the man in the video, and any information about the person or people who filmed it happening.
The video, posted to Instagram, was reposted by at least three accounts, according to police. The social media account handles that allegedly posted the video include: @fastlifetre, @_1richambition and @Who_is_jet. 11Alive attempted to verify those Instagram accounts, but was unable to. Police said neither the person who filmed the video nor the people who saw it happen would face charges.
11Alive reporters are working to determine what charges and punishments the people in the video could face. Police say the man could face misdemeanor animal cruelty charges.
11Alive's Hope Ford spoke to officer Lisa Bender with the Atlanta Police Department said not only is what happened illegal, it's also an indicator that something more serious could happen in the future.
"It was pretty disturbing to watch," Bender said. "And it's been proven people who are violent toward animals are typically violent toward people."
Police are now also hoping to find the cat and see if the animal needs medical attention. If the cat is seriously injured, police said the person responsible would face more severe felony cruelty charges. So far, a canvas of the gas station did not lead animal control officers to the cat, so they are unsure at this point if it is still alive.
Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers tip line at 404-577-TIPS (8477) or online at www.crimestoppersatlanta.org. Tipsters can remain anonymous and could be eligible for the reward of up to $2,000 for the arrest and indictment of the suspects.
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