By Joe Beck
A Middletown man is facing a felony charge of torturing an animal and causing its death following his indictment by a grand jury Thursday in Frederick County Circuit Court.
Hunter Douglas Mundy of 8004 S. Main St. was released on $5,000 unsecured bond and is scheduled for another court appearance at 9 a.m. Aug. 14.
Authorities are accusing Mundy of shooting an arrow into a neighbor's pet cat in late May. The cat, which belonged to Gary and Luisa Nichols, died from its wound. The Nichols have been offering a $500 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the crime.
Middletown Detective Steve Goldizen said in an interview Tuesday that Mundy admitted shooting the arrow into the cat, named Tata, but the defendant insisted the shooting was accidental. Goldizen said Mundy told him that he had already shot one arrow into a board for practice when the cat suddenly appeared in front of him.
"He explained that he was six feet away, and the cat jumped up from nowhere and at the same time, the arrow was released, and it killed the cat," Goldizen said of Mundy.
Mundy also told him there was a witness present during the shooting, Goldizen said. But Goldizen said the person Mundy identified as the witness said he was inside the house and did not see the shooting, which took place in the yard of Mundy's residence.
"Other witnesses I talked to said (Mundy) was bragging about shooting the cat, and that pretty much sums up the case," Goldizen said.
Mundy's defense attorney, Phillip S. Griffin, confirmed that his client told Goldizen he did not intend to shoot the cat. Griffin called the case "an unfortunate accident."
"It was our hope we would be able to resolve this matter without getting the criminal justice system involved," Griffin said. "Mr. Mundy is an animal lover who has recently had a litter of kittens in his own house."
Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or firstname.lastname@example.org