MUNCIE, IN (WCMH) — An Indiana man is now facing charges after police say he committed a shocking act of animal cruelty.
Police say 32-year-old Clinton Ricker was at alone at his mother’s house for about a half hour. Ricker’s mother had called 911 after she came home and couldn’t find her pet rabbit and her kitten.
“When she came back she was looking around for the rabbit and the kitten,” said Det. Kyle Monroe with the Muncie Police Department. “Can’t find them anywhere, opens op the wood stove and there they are.”
When officers arrived on the scene, both animals’ bodies were burning on the front porch. Investigators say they believe Ricker shot the animals before putting them in the stove.
“We see a decent amount of neglect cases — left out in the cold, not fed, beaten — but executed and incinerated is not anything in [the] eight years I’ve been around I’ve heard of,” Monroe told WXIN.
Court documents say that Ricker admitted to incinerating the pets. The documents say that Ricker threw the rabbit in the stove out of mercy, saying it had a tumor and he was just trying to get rid of it. Ricker’s mother said the rabbit was never sick.
Neighbors are shocked by the brutal crime.
“It bothers me. It’s shocking and appalling,” said neighbor Carla Hulic. “It makes you wonder, ‘Why?’”
“It’s a sad case,” said Emily Vandever. “It’s a sad person that does something like that.”
Ricker didn’t tell detectives why he also killed the kitten, which was just a few months old at the time.