Woman Who Shot Cat with Crossbow Avoids Jail Time

An East Tawas woman who shot her neighbor’s cat with a crossbow has a chance at avoiding a felony record.

23-year-old Taylor Shipman was sentenced Monday, March 14 in Iosco County Circuit Court to two years of probation under the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act. The HYT act allows a judge to place a defendant aged 17 – 24 in jail or on probation without a conviction, and if the sentence is successfully completed they can avoid a criminal record. In addition to the probation, Shipman is also prohibited from owning animals while on probation and was ordered to pay a $500 fine and roughly $1,300 in various costs related to the animal’s treatment.

Shipman pleaded guilty in January to third-degree killing or torturing an animal, a 4-year felony, after shooting a crossbow bolt at a neighbor’s orange cat named Oliver. Owner Eric Erickson says he arrived home after work on July 15, only to find the outdoor cat with the bolt jutting through his head and neck area. Shipman was arrested three days later.

Oliver is still alive and has since been treated for his injuries.