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Man who shot at cat is charged after bullets hit house next door

Mark Cook
Mark Cook

Charges were filed against a man who shot at his cat, after the bullets went through the walls of his house and hit a neighboring home, reported WKBN on Friday.

Mark L. Cook Sr., 57, of Struthers, Ohio appeared in Struthers Municipal Court on Friday. Although no animal cruelty charges have been filed, Cook was charged with improperly discharging a firearm into a habitation, which is a second degree felony. His bond was set at $15,000.

Detective Jeff Lewis of the Struthers Police Department said officers responded to a call shortly after 3 p.m. on Thursday. The residents of the home, which is located on Park Avenue, reported their house had been shot at several times.

Police then questioned Cook, who lived next door. Cook originally told investigators a 9-millimeter gun he was carrying accidentally discharged when he fell. He later admitted to shooting at the cat which was on a bed downstairs in his home.

Cook allegedly became angry when the cat started clawing at items on the bed. According to police, the cat was not hit.

More than 30 guns as well as ammunition were found in the home and removed by police. Cook shares the home with his mother.

A preliminary hearing is set for August 1, 2014. In Ohio, a second degree felony carries a prison sentence ranging from two to eight years and/or fines of not more than $15,000. Had he been charged with animal cruelty, which is a second degree misdemeanor, he could have faced a sentence of imprisonment up to 90 days and/or a fine of not more than $750.

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