Sussex

'Brighton cat killer': Police arrest local man

Samson the cat
Image caption Samson nearly died after being stabbed in the stomach

Detectives investigating a spate of cat attacks have arrested a man.

About 25 cats have been killed or seriously injured in 18 months by a perpetrator known locally as the "Brighton cat killer".

In the latest attack, a cat was wounded in Queens Road on 31 May and died.

Police viewed CCTV footage and a local man, 52, was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage and possession of an offensive weapon in a public place.

He has been released on police bail until 28 June.

Between September and November 2018 alone, seven cats were found to have been attacked.

Samson the tabby had to have two emergency operations after being stabbed in the stomach.

'Distressing'

Police are appealing to trace a man who may have been a witness to the latest killing. He was seen on CCTV stroking the cat before it was attacked.

He is described as white, about 5ft 8ins, in his 20s or 30s, of medium build, with long dark wavy hair. He was wearing sunglasses.

Det Insp Chris Thompson said: "We understand how distressing the deaths of these cats have been to both owners and organisations concerned with animal welfare, and we are determined to establish what has happened to them in order to get answers for owners."

Patrols have been increased in the areas where there have been attacks, he added.

The force has also been working with an expert from the Royal Veterinary College to establish how all the cats were killed.

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