LOMPOC, Calif. - Three Lompoc teens are facing animal cruelty charges after a Thursday morning incident prompted Lompoc police to be called out to a home at 805 E. Airport Avenue.
Investigators say a Santa Barbara County Animal Control Officer was investigating a noise complaint at the address above just after 11:30 a.m. The animal control officer saw the three teens, ages 13, 14 and 15, appearing to be torturing a rabbit.
"She attempted to contact them and one of them told her they could shoot and kill her if she entered," said a Lompoc police press release regarding a threat the animal control officer received from the teens when she attempted to talk to them.
Lompoc police was immediately called following the threat, and an investigation revealed the teens had allegedly stolen, tortured and killed a neighbor's pet rabbit. Police say the teens used a dog, a knife and a hatchet to torture and kill the rabbit.
All three teen suspects confessed to the crimes and were taken to Juvenile Hall, according to the Lompoc Police Department.
The teens are facing charges that include:
- 597(a)pc-Felony animal cruelty
- 422pc-Criminal Threats
- 488pc-petty theft