Ryan T. Carleton (below) makes his initial appearance before Judge Kevin Stitham (upper left) in Piscataquis County Judicial Court in this November 2020 file photo. Credit: Nina Mahaleris / BDN

Ryan T. Carleton, 43, formerly of Guilford was found guilty of animal cruelty on Tuesday, after apparently beating his father’s cat to death with a frying pan last year.

The Piscataquis County judge who delivered the verdict has not yet set a sentencing date, News Center Maine reports. 

The dead cat was discovered on Thanksgiving morning when Carleton’s father called police around 7 a.m. to report that his son was “out of it,” and acting violently, according to a police affidavit. The father told deputies that he had allowed his son to stay at his home the night before — despite the fact that Carleton was violating his conditions of release by contacting him — because he had nowhere else to go.

The cat was apparently named “Little Princess,” and was 8 or 9 months old. Its body was found beside a bloody cast iron frying pan upstairs in the room where Carleton had been sleeping.

According to one of the responding deputies, Carleton told him that “the cat attacked him so he had to kill it,” according to News Center Maine.