Police guard home of UK woman who put cat in bin

Wed Aug 25, 2010 4:19am EDT
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LONDON (Reuters Life!) - The home of a woman filmed picking up a cat and throwing it into a rubbish bin is under police guard in Britain after her actions sparked outrage from animal lovers and even death threats.

Mary Bale, 45, told the Sun newspaper on Wednesday: "I really don't see what everyone is getting so excited about -- it's just a cat."

"I don't know what came over me, but I suddenly thought it would be funny to put it in the wheelie bin, which was right beside me."

The cat's owner, Darryl Mann, had installed security cameras outside his house after vandals damaged his car so consulted the CCTV footage after his tabby Lola went missing for 15 hours and was finally found crying for help inside the bin.

On the footage, Mann and his wife Stephanie saw a middle-aged woman leaning down to stroke Lola in the street -- then picking up the tabby by the scruff of her neck and dumping her into the bin, slamming the lid closed.

The couple put the footage onto the video sharing website YouTube and set up a Facebook site called "Help Find The Woman Who Put My Cat In The Bin."

"I don't know how anyone could, you know, go to bed and sleep at night knowing that they've just locked a cat in a wheelie bin," Mann told Reuters Television.

The footage sparked outrage from animal lovers across Britain and prompted an investigation by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA).

Mann said Lola survived the ordeal in good shape.

"She's fine. She's very tired obviously with everything that's being going on, but other than that she's fine," Mann told reporters at his home in Coventry, 95 miles northwest of London.

(Reporting by Reuters Television, Editing by Steve Addison)