PROVO — Provo police are investigating several cases of animal cruelty involving the torturing and tying of six cats to FrontRunner tracks.
On Provo's west side, police said six cats have been tortured by burning and strangling before they were bound to the train tracks. It is in the northwest area of Provo, between Independence Avenue and Geneva Road near the tracks.
"The cats have been bound by tape on their paws, and also they had wire around their neck and there were also some signs of burning on the cats themselves," said Provo police Lt. Mathew Siufanua.
A woman who found her burned, strangled and bound cat last month led officers to find five other cats treated the same way.
Police said there is no question the cats were being deliberately targeted, and the suspect may be using a trap to catch the cats.
"The owner of the cat believes that her cat had to have been trapped because her cat doesn't typically go to people and is pretty shy," Siufanua said.
Police want to stop the person responsible before the behavior targets people. The Humane Society of Utah is even offering a $3,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.
"What we worry about is an individual who is willing to do this to animals will eventually progressively get worse and do this to adults or children," Siufanua said.
The cruelty to the cats can be charged as a felony.
Cat owners who believe their pet may have been involved are asked to contact police. Detectives continue to look for suspects, but anyone with information is asked to contact Provo police at 801-852-6210.
Contributing: Peter Samore