A Joliet man who was arrested early Monday on animal cruelty charges at the Louis Joliet Mall is accused of keeping several cats, a dog and a couple of guinea pigs inside of a car in below-freezing weather in the Cinemark theater parking lot.
About 10:15 p.m. Sunday, officers responded to a report that several animals were left inside a vehicle in the Cinemark parking lot at 3340 Mall Loop Drive, Joliet police Sgt. Christopher Botzum said.
Upon arrival, officers found a car with pets inside, Botzum said. The car was fogged and iced over, which made it “extremely difficult” for the officers to see inside the car, but they were able to tell that no one was inside except for several cats, a dog and guinea pigs, he said.
The officers tried to contact the registered owner of the vehicle but were not successful, Botzum said. Joliet Township Animal Control was contacted about the incident and the officers made a forced entry into the vehicle because the health of the animals was at risk because of the cold, he said.
The cats, dog and guinea pigs were taken into custody by animal control and a note was left for 27-year-old Aaron Porche to contact either Joliet police or animal control, Botzum said.
Porche contacted Joliet police and met with officers after he was informed the animals in his car were taken by animal control, Botzum said.
Porche was arrested about 1 a.m. Monday on a charge of animal cruelty, booked at the Joliet Police Department and released on his own recognizance, Botzum said.