SPRINGDALE, Ark. (AP) - Animal shelter workers are trying to figure out who killed 10 kittens - and why.
A parking lot sweeper found six dead kittens Thursday - the day after the animals were stolen from Springdale Animal Services. Five of the kittens were four weeks old and were taken from their mother, who was pining for them.
"We've been asking 'why' all day," said Teresa Johnson, the shelter's assistant manager. "Why?"
The six dead kittens wre among 20 cats released from their cages during a break-in Wednesday, said Jill Hatfield, the superintendent of the Fayetteville Animal Shelter. Four other dead kittens were found at the Springdale shelter.
"They did terrible things," she said. "Some were thrown in dog pens inside the shelter. Luckily none of the dogs did anything."
The fate of the other 10 kittens wasn't known. It's possible they escaped.
Nothing was stolen in the break-in.
Police are investigating whether the break-in is related to one at the Fayetteville shelter last month. The night of Aug. 9, someone freed dogs and cats from their cages.
"They didn't harm any of the animals at our shelter, so we aren't sure if the two incidents are related," Hatfield said.
Animal cruelty is a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum sentence of one year in jail. Arkansas is one of only five states in the country with animal cruelty laws that do not have felony provisions.
"We want these folks caught," Hatfield said.