Man charged with strangling cat, threatening to fight police

Published: Feb. 2, 2023 at 11:00 AM EST
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SALEM, W.Va (WDTV) - A Harrison County man has been charged after officers said he strangled a cat and threated to fight police.

Salem police officers were dispatched to a home on West Main St. in Salem on Wednesday around 5 p.m., according to a criminal complaint.

Officers said 29-year-old Joshua Bjorson, of Salem, had been drinking alcohol for about two hours before the altercation “because it was his birthday.”

Bjorson got into an altercation with a woman in the home and “became so angry that he strangled a black cat … until it became limp” before trying to fight another man, officers said.

When police officers arrived on the scene, Bjorson allegedly talked about how he was going to fight two officers.

As officers entered the room he was in, they said he “walked toward a machete that was laying on the bed,” but it was taken away before he could grab it.

Bjorson then took a step towards officers and said “I am going to beat your f****** a**” and took another step toward officers with a balled fist, saying “Shoot me.”

Court documents say officers deployed a taser on Bjorson and fought with him for about 10 minutes before arresting him. He allegedly continued threatening and cursing at officers.

Officers said Bjorson said multiple times that he strangled the cat but did not kill it, further saying “it was not a big deal, it was just a cat.”

Bjorson has been charged with assault on an officer, obstructing an officer, and animal cruelty. He is being held at North Central Regional Jail.