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Bristol man sent to prison for killing roommate’s cat

BRISTOL - A man who, has been convicted of strangulation and assault in the past, has now been sentenced to two years in prison, following the killing of his roommate's cat.

In March, 28-year-old Jonathan Ely, of Bristol, pleaded guilty to killing the cat last August 24.

"I held him in the palm of my hand the day he was born and every day after until the day he was killed," said David Farmer, owner of the cat named Gus, while delivering his victim impact statement during sentencing at Bristol Superior Court Thursday.

Farmer told FOX61 that Ely lived and worked with him for three months last summer. Then, Farmer says, Ely became upset with him because he was going to start charging him for rides to work. So, Ely admitted, according to court documents, to kicking the 11 month old cat with his steel toed boots.

Farmer told Judge John Cronan "I’m angry, I’m hurt and I feel guilty very guilty about this. These are feelings I’m gonna feel for the rest of my life. I don’t know if Jonathan Ely will feel these feelings but I know I will."

Ely was sentenced to two years in prison on charges of cruelty to animals and a violation of probation.

"You are not to, in any form, possess or be near any pets," the judge told Ely.

Cronan told the court he typically does not comment during sentencing, but today, he said he could not resist.

"We see bad behavior every day here, but this is beyond my comprehension," Cronan said to Ely. "You should really be ashamed of yourself. I don’t know how you can live with yourself."

Farmer called Ely a monster both during sentencing and after.

"Anybody that could do this kind of thing is a monster," he said.

Desmond‘s Army, a statewide group of animal advocates, was in court Thursday in support of Farmer.

"He got jail time, which is always good," said John Frascatore, a member of Desmond's Army. "Anytime we send an abuser to jail sends a message out to other people that if you abuse an animal you suffer the consequences of the law."

Because he’s already served nearly nine months in jail, Ely will only be required to spend an additional 15 months behind bars.

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