A 79-year-old Ohio woman will serve a jail sentence for feeding stray cats. Nancy Segula began feeding the neighborhood felines after a neighbor moved away, abandoning his two cats. The Garfield Heights resident felt concerned for the deserted pets and started leaving food out for them. Neighbors were not happy to see this and reported her to the local Animal Warden.
In spite of reports and warnings, Segula continued to feed the creatures. Moreover, she started feeding and taking in more cats. Neighbors continued to complain, with no results. Soon the Animal Warden paid a visit.
The Animal Warden informed Segula of a local ordinance prohibiting her from feeding stray animals. She was sited in 2015 for this, and again in July 2017 for having excessive cats at her residence. Following, she was cited for failure to dispose of feline waste.
After the waste disposal citation, Segula was placed on a 2-year probation. When nothing changed, she was called in for a hearing. At the hearing, she was given 10 days to clear her home of cats, or she would face jail time. She ignored this warning.
Finally, Segula faces jail time. She has been sentenced to 10 days at the county jail. Segula is expected to serve beginning August 11 at 9 a.m.
Segula has a simple explanation for why she continued to feed and care for local cats, despite repeated warnings. She says she is a cat lover. Her concern for the animals' welfare supersedes the legal consequences of her actions.
The elderly woman also explains that the cats give her company and help her emotionally. Her husband and her two former pet cats are all gone. Keeping cats relieved her loneliness.
Segula's son, Dave Pawlowski, thinks the punishment is too harsh. He was shocked to hear that his 79-year-old mother would face 10 days behind bars.
Segula certainly did break the county laws. There is no doubt that she blatantly ignored repeated warnings. But she sounds like a lonely old woman with a kind heart!
There is still a chance that the sentence will be reversed.