Reward leads to arrest in cat scalding investigation

Reward leads to arrest in cat scalding investigation
Laderrick O'Neal Rostchild, 24, was taken into custody Friday in connection with a viral video of an cat being tortured. (Photo source: Jackson County Sheriff's Dept.)

MOSS POINT, MS (WLOX) - The third and final suspect wanted in connection with a viral video showing the torture of a cat has been arrested.

Laderrick O'neal Rostchild, 24, was taken into custody without incident Friday afternoon in Moss Point, just hours after Moss Point Police Department announced a $2,500 reward for information leading to his arrest. He is charged with aggravated cruelty to an animal.

Authorities had been searching for Laderrick since Dec. 27 when he was identified as suspect in a Snapchat video. Also identified as a suspect in the video -- which garnered widespread attention after it was later shared on other social media outlets -- was Laderrick's uncle, Larry Rostchild Jr.

Larry turned himself into police on Dec. 28 and is also charged with aggravated cruelty to an animal. Laderrick's girlfriend, Karmen Coleman -- who police say is accused of initially posting the video to social media -- turned herself in to authorities on Dec. 23. She is charged with rendering criminal assistance.

After a month of Laderrick Rostchild evading authorities, In Defense of Animals -- the international animal protection organization that runs the Justice for Animals Campaign -- offered up the reward leading to his arrest.

"Laderrick O'Neal Rostchild's criminal history of fraud, theft, domestic violence, resisting arrest, and contempt of court was alarming," said Doll Stanley, director of the Justice for Animals Campaign. "Sadists rarely indulge only in violence to animals. Sociopaths and psychopaths are a menace to any vulnerable being in their path."

In the video, two men are seen dousing a black-and-white male cat with two pots of boiling water while it is confined in a trap. The men in the video laugh as they kick the trap and mock the cat's suffering. An unidentified female is heard off-camera, laughing and encouraging the duo. Officials say the cat was released from the trap afterwards and was later found dead due to thermal burns.

All three suspects are scheduled to be arraigned on Feb. 14 in Moss Point Municipal Court.

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