LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) - Police in Las Cruces say charges against a man accused of battering his girlfriend and mistreating two pets have been upgraded after his cat tested positive for methamphetamines.
They say 39-year-old Aaron Spaulding was arrested in June on suspicion of false imprisonment, battery against a household member, interference with communication and two counts of animal cruelty.
The animals involved are a dog and a cat.
Police say Spaulding allegedly neglected the pets and abused the cat by squeezing it until it cried out and strangling it.
A veterinarian told police the cat showed signs of neurological deficits and its blood tested positive for meth.
Police say one of the animal cruelty charges now has been upgraded from a misdemeanor to a felony.
It's unclear if Spaulding has a lawyer yet.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.