Fired DPD Officer Had No Qualms about Killing Cat

Image of Dallas Police Car. | Image by Ricardo Nava

Fired Dallas police officer Jesse Coates, 27, accused of animal cruelty for killing a cat in distress, said he had no qualms about killing the animal, according to an affidavit.

Coates was hired in January 2020 and was fired on Sept. 21 for killing the cat. According to court records, Dallas police obtained a warrant of arrest for Coates, who now faces a third-degree felony. His bail was set at $15,000.

According to the affidavit, Coates and two other officers responded to a domestic disturbance in the 9900 block of Bluffcreek Drive on Aug.20. Coates and the officers came upon the cat lying injured on the sidewalk near the home.

The affidavit said the incident was captured by Body-camera footage which police have not released.

According to the affidavit, the footage shows an officer asking a resident at the home what happened to the cat, which was about a month old. The resident told the officers that the kitten was suffering.

The affidavit also said Coates asked the resident if there was a person involved in an emergency. The resident answered in the negative, after which Coates went into his squad car and got out a clear plastic bag.

According to the affidavit, Coates then asked the resident if she agreed to him putting down her animal since it “appears to be dead, dying, in distress.” The resident answered by pointing to another officer, saying, “I will consent.”

The affidavit stated that Coates asked the resident a second time if she consented to kill the cat, and the resident declined. Coates then replied, “Well, to put her out of her misery?” The resident replied, “No, I don’t have a problem with it.” Coates asked the question again, and the resident answered that she didn’t have a problem with Coates putting the animal down.

According to the affidavits, Coates then placed the kitten in the plastic bag before squeezing and twisting the animal’s neck with both hands for about three minutes.

Coates later released the animal and asked the residents if she still needed the police, to which she responded no.

The affidavit stated further that a police sergeant received notice of the incident on Aug. 28. A detective who works animal cruelty cases found Coates’ action to be “cruel in manner” owing to how he handled the kitten and the time it took for it to die.

Coates told detectives that he thought the cat was in distress and was suffering from internal bleeding since it wasn’t moving and was crying out, the affidavit said.

Coates also told detectives two officers told him later on that he should have called animal control. He said he didn’t call detectives because the resident had given him consent to kill the cat, and they didn’t think she would raise any concerns later.

The affidavit revealed that Coates told detectives he had no “ethical and moral” qualms about his actions because the cat was in great distress, fear and pain.

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