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Cat killings: verdict on media hype?

   Lackawanna animal-control officer Frederick S. Grasso was found not guilty Friday on two misdemeanor charges,  for shooting to death a mother cat and two kittens last June at an Eagan Drive apartment complex.

   In a nonjury trial, West Seneca Town Justice Richard B. Scott found the evidence did not show Grasso acted criminally when he shot the cats after responding to an apartment manager's complaint they were acting aggressively toward her.

   Grasso, who still works as an animal control officer in Lackawanna, testified he was forced to shoot the cats after they hissed and spit at him and the apartment manager when they tried to access a basement area. Four other kittens survived.

   Scott ruled that Grasso acted justifiably in shooting the animals. The case outraged animal lovers and drew widespread publicity throughout Western New York.

   What do you think about the verdict? Do you think the media's coverage of this case was overblown?

-- T.J. Pignataro

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