It all began with a cat who found his way into a neighbor’s bird feeder.
It was about 7 p.m. on Friday when a 50-year-old rural La Crescent woman looked out at her backyard bird feeder and noticed another one of her neighbor’s cats looking for a songbird lunch, according to Winona County Sheriff Ron Ganrude.
Tired of cats repeatedly bothering birds and her feeder and tired of cats pooping in her lawn, she grabbed her trusty BB gun, went out into her yard. She fired the gun but missed the cat.
The cat, fled.
Just moments later, Todd Allen Newman, 47, packing his own BB gun and upset that she had taken a pot shot at his pussy cat, confronted the woman on the outside of her home. He pointed the gun at her, telling her “this is just a warning,” court documents state.
Frightened, the woman immediately ran to her house and called the sheriff.
When a deputy arrived, he spoke with Newman who said that he had gone outside and “hollered (at the woman) to stop shooting at his cats.” He denied having any kind of a weapon, a point disputed by a witness, who said Newman grabbed a gun before heading out to confront the woman, court documents state.
A BB/pellet gun was later found stashed in Newman’s couch.
Newman was then arrested and charged with second degree assault with a dangerous weapon, and with two counts of threatening violence — all felonies.
These two neighbors have been in conflict “for ages,” Ganrude stated.