The two Maine teen aged girls who placed an eight week old kitten in a microwave oven and posted a Vine video with the distressed kitten online in 2013 pleaded guilty to the charges against them and were sentenced last month.
The 16 year old South Portland girls were 15 when they were charged with felonies last September. The charges were later lessened to misdemeanor animal cruelty. The two initially entered the juvenile equivalent of an adult not guilty plea in May and were ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation. Their lawyer said they had no intention of harming the kitten.
The pair, whose names have not been publicly released because of their ages, pleaded guilty to cruelty to animals on July 21 in Cumberland County combined court and were sentenced to 100 hours of community service each, according to Tamara Getchell, spokeswoman for the Cumberland County District Attorney’s office.
South Portland police located the girls and charged them with animal cruelty after receiving several calls about the incident when the video was posted online in 2013.
The Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland gained custody of the kitten after her family agreed to surrender her to South Portland Animal Control. She was given the name Miracle because of what she’d survived.
Miracle was used by the girls in the making of a sickening 6 second Vine video that was posted to Twitter. She is placed in the microwave in the first part of the video. In the second part of the video, after a cut, she is seen going around and then exiting the microwave in distress as the door is opened for her by the second of the two girls.
Miracle was thankfully unharmed by the experience, which could have killed her had she remained in the running microwave for a longer time. Once at the shelter, she was determined to be underweight and loaded with fleas. She initially struggled to maintain her body temperature and her body had trouble absorbing nutrients. Shelter staff said the 8 week old kitten had probably been taken away from her mother too soon.
Mary Byram of Scarborough was the winner of a lottery to adopt Miracle. “It was unreal. I just was so excited,” she said about the experience when received the good news.
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