Owner of movie-starring cats arrested after cops find dead cats - WNEM TV 5


Owner of movie-starring cats arrested after cops find dead cats in ice chest

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Gilbert police say they've arrested a woman who had 46 cats, including 5 dead felines, in her townhouse.

Gilbert police spokesperson Jesse Sanger said Jill Hopper was breeding the cats in her home near Lakeside and Val Vista drives.

The Gilbert Fire Department was called to the home Thursday because of a reported smell of ammonia. They checked the levels and they were much higher than they should have been.

"The smell was overwhelming ... tested air quality, safe is 15 parts ... they read 50 parts inside the residence," Sanger said.

Gilbert police said they found dead cats packed in an ice chest.

A few are even somewhat famous. Two of her cats were in actor Denzel Washington's movie The Book of Eli.

The cats were sold on the website, Dixie Willow Ragdoll Cats, but are now going to the Maricopa County Animal Care and Control west shelter.

Police said Hopper has not signed the cats over to the facility, so there will likely be a court case.

The East Valley Tribune reports Hopper is being charged with animal cruelty and the home has been deemed unfit to live.

Stay with cbs5az.com for updates on this developing story.

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