They would have used blowpipes bought in Indonesia to shoot the felines with darts. Two of them were also found disemboweled near a fast food restaurant.
Thursday, cats were found shot with darts and mutilated near a US army barracks in Hawaii, according to the association KAT Charities which published photos and denounced these acts. Since then, the information has been taken up by multiple American media.
KAT Charities founder Dr Karen Tyson told Honolulu TV station KHON that her organization is concerned that troops stationed at Hawaii’s Schofield Barracks are linked to animal abuse: ‘We understand that ‘a group of soldiers bought dart guns on a recent training mission in Indonesia and brought them back to Hawaii,’ she said.
Local veterinary services have confirmed that they recently treated a cat named Katness for a neck dart injury. Karen Tyson said she saw other cats with similar injuries and said two cats were found disemboweled near a fast food restaurant near the military base. She said it was obvious that these animals had been “intentionally mutilated” and not injured in an accident.
An ongoing investigation
The military police have been informed of the problem. A Garrison spokesperson told the New York Daily News that an investigation was underway. “This type of behavior is not tolerated on the installation and is not consistent with the values of our army,” he said. Soldiers found guilty of animal cruelty can be fired and risk fines and incarceration.
The Korea Herald reported in late May that at least 10 feral cats had been killed near Osan Air Base, South Korea, by members of the US service. A local television station reportedly aired what appears to be military personnel firing an air rifle at a caged cat in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province. Air Force personnel reportedly said animals roaming the base, which includes airstrips, were treated “by the rules”.
Dr. Karen Tyson hopes the military will speed up their investigation. “While we wanted to give commanders the opportunity to investigate the situation, we are concerned that the animals will continue to be harmed,” Tyson said, according to KITV. “We only captured one of the injured cats, while others are still on base suffering with these darts in their bodies.”