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Former Big Spring animal control officer arrested - Odessa American: Crime & Justice

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Former Big Spring animal control officer arrested

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Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2015 9:45 am

A former Big Spring animal control officer was arrested Thursday and charged with cruelty to animals after an investigation into four dead cats found in his official animal control vehicle.

Michael Ray Arista, 19, was charged with the class A misdemeanor as a result of a Big Spring Police Department investigation and administrative investigation. Arista resigned his position with the department after being placed on administrative leave.

According to a news release from the department, Arista left multiple cats in his animal control vehicle, and “Arista’s actions were found to be a contributing factor in the death of the cats” on June 20.

Arista failed to “provide necessary food, water, care, or shelter for an animal in the person’s custody,” according to a probable cause affidavit.

According to police, the cats were found at about 10 a.m. June 20 by a Big Spring police officer at the law enforcement center. The on-call animal control officer that day found four dead cats and “numerous” other cats inside the vehicle.

Arista was released Thursday from the Howard County Detention Center on a $5,000 bond.

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