It doesn’t make any sense, yet it’s a fact. Widow Nancy Segula in Ohio, United States, was sentenced to a 10-day stint in jail in a city for feeding stray cats, a ruling that she finds baffling.
To her, it makes no sense that a city ordinance would forbid her to aid the most desperate of strays. She had a soft spot for all animals, but her feline friends in need made her feel torn between this legislation and her compassion.
Years ago, Nancy became aware of many stray moggies in her neighborhood. The animal lover wanted to help the helpless creatures.
So, the widow began feeding them regularly. While the felines welcomed Nancy’s generosity, it also increased the number of strays.
The cats realized food was available in this area, so they moved into it. Not only did this influx displeased Nancy’s neighbors, but it also violated a city ordinance.
Besides, other residents complained that the older lady would never clean up after her beloved pusses. According to News 5, the complaints went back to 2015.
The Animal Warden at the time attempted to collaborate with her to remove the stray cats from the neighborhood, and she was informed about the local legislation against feeding strays.
Nancy claimed that she did her best to care for the cats, but since she did not own them, she couldn’t be held liable for any messes they may make.
The cat lover gets in trouble for feeding cats
The woman was put on probation in November 2017 and fined close to $2,000 for continuing to feed the cats despite the complaints she had received. The local authorities also trapped and relocated 22 cats from the neighborhood.
But nothing deterred the 79-year-old; she kept feeding the cats because she worried they wouldn’t eat for days. Her actions violated her probation, prompting a court to sentence her to ten days in jail in July 2019.
Nancy admitted she was terrified of prison since she had no clue whom she would meet there. At 79, she would be an easy target for anyone with malicious intent.
The news was picked up by several media outlets, all of whom expressed their bewilderment at the existence of legislation penalizing those who provide shelter and food to homeless animals.
The public thought it was unfair that someone trying to care for lone animals be punished instead of those who abandoned them.
Everyone who heard the case thought the 10-day punishment was excessive, arguing that the court had more pressing matters to address. As the story spread nationwide, a judge agreed to revisit Nancy’s case.
Eventually, the senior lady’s sentence was dismissed under the condition that Nancy removed all kittens from her garden and stopped feeding animals.