BEDFORD-STUYVESANT — A 28-year-old man was charged with animal cruelty after choking a cat and slamming it against the wall and a counter at a Chinese restaurant in Brooklyn, police and prosecutors said.
Witnesses said that Salah Zaid, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, took the cat from the basement of Seven & One Deli & Grocery on the corner of Fulton Street and Throop Avenue, on Friday around 3:30 p.m..
He began to beat it on the sidewalk near the nearby New People Kitchen take-out restaurant, according to police and the Daily News.
When the cat briefly escaped Zaid's clutches, it raced into the Chinese restaurant at 1505 Fulton St. near Throop Avenue, according to court documents. Zaid chased the cat inside, then proceeded to attack it again, prosecutors said.
Graphic video from inside the restaurant obtained by the Daily News shows Zaid grabbing the cat as it frantically tries to escape him, then slamming it twice against a wall.
Zaid then throws the cat against the counter before hurling it through an opening in the Plexiglass window into the kitchen, an employee told police.
After the attack, he’s seen walking outside the restaurant and laying down on the sidewalk.
Deli owner Ahmad Hussein told the News that Zaid came into his store earlier Friday morning trying to make small talk about Yemen, where Hussein was born, but “everything he said didn’t make any sense.”
Zaid returned later that day and was spotted in the bodega’s basement, employees told the Daily News. He was kicked out, but left with the cat.
The animal had been living at the deli for about two weeks after an elderly customer said she could no longer care for it, according to the paper.
The male cat was taken to the ASPCA's Animal Hospital Intensive Care Unit, according to the organization, and suffered from a hemorrhage in his eye, bruising to the tongue, gums and lips, fluid in the abdomen and trauma to the lungs.
"He will require intensive, ongoing medical monitoring due to his injuries. This continues to be a very serious case and it is still too soon to discuss a prognosis," the ASPCA said in a statement.
Police who responded to the scene at the nearby Chinese restaurant found Zaid with several scratches on his head and body, and he was taken to Interfaith Medical Center for treatment, police said.
He was charged with animal cruelty, court records show, and remanded at Rikers Island with a psychiatric exam ordered. He is due back in court on April 26.
Attorney information for Zaid was not immediately available.