Tragic Ending For A Kitten Buried Alive

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A heartbreaking picture of a kitten that was buried alive in Erwin is receiving hundreds of shares on social media. The photo had been circulating on Unicoi County Animal Shelter’s Facebook page. A local woman, Donna Stapleton of Erwin first seen the photo she had this to say, “It just broke my heart, I couldn’t believe that somebody would do that.”

In the photo, a 6-week-old kitten named Warrior is lying on a blanket covered in blood and dirt. The Facebook post says “His mouth and airways were full of dirt. He constantly gasped for air. They did their very best, but he could not be saved.”  Warrior was transported to Robinson Animal Hospital, he eventually succumbed to his injuries and died.

Unicoi County court documents say the kitten was rescued from a shallow grave on Pinecrest Rd. in Erwin. One Erwin, TN neighbor said she couldn’t believe something so horrific could happen in her neighborhood. She went on to say “Yeah I was shocked and a lot of people was shocked, you know hearing of that, Whoever done it, I think they need to be punished for it.”

The man charged for this horrific crime is Johnny Mack Rogers of Erwin. He is facing aggravated animal cruelty, which is a felony. According to the official court document, Rogers buried the kitten alive after it was stepped on.

One resident had this to say “If you see it, report it. If you know what’s going on report it to the police, to the animal control. They feel too, just like we do. The animals they feel too. They just don’t have a voice to say it and we need to be their voice.”

Rogers is set to appear in court on September 20, 2018

If you would like to help the Unicoi County Animal Shelter, they currently have a list on their Facebook page with items they are in need of:

  • *Cat Litter
  • *Dry cat/dog food (Whiskas, Purina One, Iams, 4Health, brands not heavy in dyes please to avoid tummy upset)
  • *Blankets, bedding, towels
  • *Bleach (germicidal)
  • *Fabuloso,
  • liquid dish soap (Dawn),
  • laundry detergent and other cleaning supplies
  • *13 gal trash bags
  • *Milkbones
  • *Dog/Cat treats and chews
  • *Dog/Cat toys
  • *Peanut butter
  • *Wet/Canned food
  • *Paper towels
  • *Stainless steel bowls and buckets
  • *Gift cards to Walmart, Tractor Supply, and Petsmart are always welcome!



East Tenn. man charged with animal cruelty after kitten buried alive dies