Santa Rosa, CA – Following three days of intense deliberation, members of the Sterling Heights Neighborhood Association Court on Monday found Skittles the Kitten guilty on six counts of being overly precious with the intent to charm and delight.
Skittles, a three-week-old tabby without an owner, was arrested on June 18 after several neighborhood residents spotted the 7-ounce kitten prancing around playfully in the fresh clippings of Linda Feldstein’s recently mowed lawn. According to police reports, the incident was so precious and smile-inducing that neighborhood resident and World War II veteran Gil McAvoy broke into a laughing fit lasting over two hours.
After administering oxygen to McAvoy, neighborhood police initially questioned Skittles and let her off with a warning. However, officers were forced to take the super-soft ball of wonderment into custody after a crowd on angry homeowners armed with water-filled spray bottles attempted to break through police lines and assault the suspect.
“Gil served this nation with dignity and honor at Iwo Jima and Okinawa so that we could live free of tyranny and oppression,” said Lamonte Jenkins, McAvoy’s neighbor. “And how do we thank this heroic man? By exposing him to an animal with so much unchecked cuteness that it nearly kills him. We wouldn’t have been able to live with ourselves if we’d let that kitty walk with nothing more than a warning.”
Delayed for several days due to prior court commitments, the trial’s opening statements finally began on the morning of June 21, with the first witnesses being called during the afternoon session. According to one anonymous court source, the defendant spent the majority of the first day curled up on the feet of her lead attorney.
After eight days of often-contentious witness testimony, court members eventually returned a guilty verdict on six of the eight charges levied against Skittles, including having a scratchy tongue that tickles to the touch, carelessly chasing after butterflies on sunny days, and possessing a ‘meow’ that warms the heart at more than three times the levels allowed in the Sterling Heights neighborhood charter. According to court sources, each of the six guilty counts carries a minimum sentence of two years, with no time off for precious behavior.
Interest in this highly publicized case had spread nationally in recent days, with news crews from CNN, FOX News, MSNBC, and Purrfect Pets magazine covering proceedings from inside the courtroom — the unfinished basement at David Harrigan’s house. Additionally, both pro- and anti-kitten activist groups from around the country could be seen marching and chanting on Harrigan’s front lawn since the first days of the trial.
“We’ve come here today to let the world know that this trial is a sham and a travesty,” said Kittens Are Treasures Too (KATT) president Maureen Vento, while wearing beige Crocs, jean shorts and a black XXL t-shirt covered in cat hair. “Kittens can’t help how precious they are any more than oriental women can help being bad drivers. Wait. Do people still call them ‘oriental’? Maybe you should forget I said…”
Prosecutors have not yet determined whether or not they will pursue contempt-of-court charges levied against Skittles, following the absolutely adorable nap she took while on the witness stand. They did, however, reiterate their intention of using Monday’s verdict as a stern warning to all future offenders.
“At this point, we’re just happy Skittles is off the street and no longer able to bring dangerous amounts of joy to the hearts of our residents and their children,” said prosecutor Harry Willette. “Today’s verdict sends a message to all young neighborhood pets — be you a kitten with eensy-weensy paws or a puppy that likes to carelessly splash around in puddles — that mood-changing and life-extending acts of immeasurable cuteness will not go unpunished.”
Defense attorney Gary Plotner immediately released a statement detailing their intention to file a formal appeal on behalf of their client. Attorney fees for all future appeals are expected to be raised at a number of celebrity fundraisers scheduled to take place in July, including Arcade Fire’s “Taste the Rainbow for Skittles” benefit concert.
In the meantime, Skittles thanked her supporters in a statement read and acted out by Plotner.
“Meow. (Pause and long stare) (Licks hand and rolls onto back) Meeooww. (Pause and long stare) (Stretches out legs as far as they can reach) Prrrrrr Prrrrrr Prrrrrr.”