APD: More charges possible in investigation of cruelty to pet cat

Photo credit: Asheville Police Department

Two people have been arrested and another person is wanted in what Asheville police call a series of animal cruelty acts that were circulated on social media.

Shariah Jessamyn Metzger, 26, and Jace Lee Greene, 29, are charged with misdemeanor improper burial of an animal after images of what appears to be a mutilated cat were posted online. Authorities say they are looking for Zackery Eugene Greene in connection with the incident.

Warrants say Asheville police found the body of a cat at the 600 block of Haywood Road.

Veronica Coit of "Asheville Cat Weirdos" said she saw pictures of a cat's body on Instagram and called the police.

"To think of what these monsters did to a cat that was sweet and friendly is awful," Coit told News 13.

Aaron Naster told News 13 he was the owner of the cat. He said the 2-year-old grey cat named Kitty was sweet, trusting and loved people.

Naster said he didn't know the three suspects in the case. He said he appreciated the support from Coit and the community as a whole.

"I just want to thank the Asheville police department for their diligent work," Naster told News 13. "Asheville is a community of love and support. So, thank you, and rest in peace Kitty."

Asheville police said in a Facebook post on Monday that a necropsy will be completed later this week and further charges are possible in the coming days.

The post also said that the department understood that many members of the Asheville community are outraged over the allegations of animal cruelty.

View the full APD statement below:

On October 25, 2018, the Asheville Police Department learned of an incident involving a series of acts of animal cruelty that had been circulated on social media. Our Animal Services Section initiated an investigation into the matter when they learned of its existence. Thanks to information sent by many of our concerned citizens, the suspects in the postings were quickly identified and interviewed. APD staff continued their investigation into the weekend, and the three suspects were charged with improper burial of an animal, a violation of city ordinance. Two of the three suspects have been located and arrested, and are currently being held in the Buncombe County Detention Center under a $15,000 secured bond. The third suspect, Zackery Eugene Greene, has yet to be located on his charges.
This incident remains under investigation by Animal Services staff and the Criminal Investigations Section. A necropsy will be conducted later in the week, and further charges may be possible in the coming days.
We understand that many members of our community are concerned and outraged about this incident. As additional information becomes available that we are able to release, we will do so. Our primary objective in this matter is to present a case to the District Attorney for a successful prosecution of any person involved in this incident, and we remain fully committed to that goal.
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