Editor’s note: This article contains sensitive material.

Madison Police officers responded to reports of animal cruelty on the 700 block of University Avenue Thursday afternoon.

Witnesses reported seeing a 19-year-old downtown Madison resident “manhandling” a cat in an apartment, according to a Madison Police Department incident report.

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The witnesses said the cat, which belongs to the man’s roommate, was swung by its hind legs in “helicopter type motion.” After placing the cat on a trash can, the man reportedly sprayed the cat with a high-powered squirt gun and put it in a plastic bag.

MPD officers responded to the incident Thursday afternoon. The man claimed he was merely playing with the cat.

Officers determined the cat did not appear to be injured and it was taken to the Dane County Humane Society.