A 60-year-old Elgin man was arrested and charged with multiple counts of animal cruelty Wednesday after police found an estimated 60 dead cats in a van in his backyard.
A city contractor was doing brush removal in the 200 block of Villa Street and became suspicious about potential animal cruelty, according to police. The code department alerted the police department Wednesday morning after hearing from the contractor and officers showed up at the home about 10:30 a.m.
Elgin Police Lt. Dan O'Shea said the resident was cooperative and gave officers consent to search his home and a van parked in the backyard. The dead cats and one dead dog all were found in the van. O'Shea said he did not know how long the animals had been there.
William C. Tinkler of the 200 block of Villa Street told police he put the animal carcasses in the van after they died. He also said he owned 12 other live cats, some of which have been caught and taken for a wellness check to Golf Rose Animal Hospital in Schaumburg, according to O'Shea. They are being treated for various infections.
Animal control officers plan to catch the remaining cats in coming days for their own wellness checks.
Tinkler was charged with four counts of cruelty to animals, one count of violating the dead animal disposal act and four counts of violation of owners duties.
He is being held in lieu of $150.00 bond and expected to appear in bond court Thursday morning.