MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Police have released surveillance video that, they said, shows a man fatally shooting a cat with a crossbow in the courtyard of a Miami Beach hotel.
The April 26 footage shows a man at The Franklin Hotel, located at 860 Collins Ave., looking around before pointing the crossbow into the bushes and shooting. A wounded cat is then seen running out of the frame.
Later that morning, police were called to the hotel. 7News cameras followed hotel employee Georgios Lollias as he showed police the alleyway dumpster where, he said, he found the cat with two arrows in his head.
A veterinarian later euthanized the animal.
Lollias, 36, later spoke with 7News about the incident. “I hear, ‘meow, meow,’ so over here, right here,” he said as he pointed underneath the dumpster. “You see? Look, look, you see the blood? Right here.”
He described how he found the alley cat, known as Strushie, in bad shape. “I was upset. I saw blood,” he said. “I don’t know how people do these things, man.”
But police said Lollias knows exactly how because, they said, he confessed to shooting Strushie and then stashing the crossbow. He was arrested July 5 and charged with animal cruelty with intent to injure or kill and tampering with evidence.
Lollias said he believed children were responsible for the cruel crime. “It’s crazy. It’s kids; I believe it’s kids,” he said, “because I talked to the police, the detective. He told me the arrow was like plastic, so I believe it’s kids.”
He even had a message for the imaginary culprits. “My message is wake up, wake up, go to school,” he said. “If you don’t go to school, get a job. Stop doing stupid things like this.”
He also said the entire incident made him sick. “I’m going to get upset, and I don’t want to say bad things, but it’s no good,” he said. “‘Cause it’s something called karma. It’s coming back.”
Detectives obtained the surveillance video from the hotel, but they said suspected images of the crime were deliberately deleted. With the assistance of the U.S. Secret Service’s Miami Electronic Crimes Task Force, the footage was recovered, leading to Lollias’ arrest.
Strushie went on to become the face of animal abuse awareness in Miami Beach. On Wednesday, city commissioners officially declared July 26 Strushie the Cat Day.
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