Louisiana woman arrested for hoarding 44 cats in mobile home

Rebecca L. Cole was charged with animal cruelty.

On August 10, 2016, the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office Animal Cruelty detective was contacted by Calcasieu Parish Animal Services (CPAS) in reference to Rebecca L. Cole, 56, of Sulphur, allegedly hoarding and collecting animals inside her home.

CPAS advised the detective they responded to an abandoned mobile home located in the 3200 block of Myrtle Springs Road in Westlake that was owned by Cole, in reference to a cruelty complaint they received involving numerous cats. They told the detective their investigation revealed Cole was collecting cats at the mobile home. They stated she had been intentionally baiting the cats by placing food in the doorway and then once they entered she would lock them inside. CPAS also stated they made numerous attempts to work with Cole to reduce the number of cats in her possession but she refused to cooperate.

On August 11, 2016, the CPSO detective, along with CPAS, served a search warrant on the mobile home. Upon entering the home the odor of urine and feces was overwhelming, and they were not able to stay inside the home for any lengthy amount of time. The home appeared to be abandoned and was solely inhabited by cats, who had destroyed the interior of the mobile home. The detective observed the majority of the cats to be feral and not accustomed to human contact.

They removed 44 cats from the mobile home. All but three were ill. The detectives learned that Cole had been collecting the cats for approximately 10 years. They also located the remains of a cat in a bedroom closet.

This case was turned over to the DA’s Office and on May 24, 2017, Judge Michael Canaday signed a warrant in the amount of $44,000 for Cole’s arrest. On August 3, she was located at her residence and arrested and booked into the Calcasieu Correctional Center and charged with 44 counts of simple cruelty to animals. She was released on bond the next day.

CPSO Detective Jennie Duncan is the lead investigator on this case.

- Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office