Internet Law

Woman Who Put Cat in Lidded Trash Bin is Found, Threatened on Facebook

It remains to be seen whether Mary Bale could face any legal repercussions from admittedly putting a family’s cat into a lidded outdoor trash container, where it was reportedly trapped for 15 hours but eventually rescued unharmed.

However, the 45-year-old British bank worker has already been tried and found guilty in the court of public opinion, after being identified through security-camera footage posted online by the cat’s owners. Several Facebook pages have been created for the apparent purpose of expressing negative opinions about Bale, and one, Death to Mary Bale, has been taken down by administrators of the social networking site because it violated terms of use, reports the New York Daily News.

Bale has now apologized for the “joke,” calling it “a split second of misjudgment that has got completely out of control,” and saying that she expected the cat to be able to escape from the trash container on its own, the newspaper recounts. She says she will cooperate fully with investigations being conducted by local police and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, but then adds: “I don’t know what the fuss is about. It’s only a cat.”

Police are monitoring Bale for her own safety, and the cat’s owners are appealing to the public for calm, according to news reports.

The Sun appears to have scored the most extensive interview with Bale and says she initially laughed when asked about the incident.

One of the cat’s owners, Stephanie Andrews-Mann, told the newspaper: “Now the police know who she is, I think people should leave it to them and the RSPCA to deal with it. I don’t like her, but I don’t want her to get hurt.”

Additional coverage: “Owners Post Video to ID Woman Who Apparently Dropped Their Cat Into Trash Bin”

Daily Mail: “Forgive me, says woman bank worker seen on CCTV shoving tabby cat in wheelie bin”

Guardian: “Woman who dumped Lola the cat in wheelie bin defends her actions”

Telegraph: “Cat put in wheelie bin: ‘Death to Mary Bale’ Facebook page taken down”

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