Collin J. Beesler

A Cabool teenager accused in a fatal cat burning case will be sentenced July 5.

Collin J. Beesler entered a guilty plea May 10 to abusing a cat that was burned alive in June 2011. The case and the death of Tinkerbell generated national attention.

Beesler entered a guilty plea to a count of animal abuse, officials said. A sentencing advisory report was ordered by Circuit Judge Mary Sheffield.

A co-defendant’s case, Dalton C. Harrison, who was certified as an adult, is pending in Howell County on a change of venue.

Tinkerbell, the cat, died in July 2011 after she was unable to fight off massive infection resulted from her burn injuries and subsequent extensive skin loss.

A probable cause statement regarding the case shows Beesler told investigators he held Tinkerbell while Harrison sprayed lighter fluid on her and then set her on the ground before Harrison lit the fire.

The case sparked widespread attention. On a Facebook page called “Justice for Tinkerbell,” which was set up by The Animal Shelter of Texas County, comments from people all over the United States were posted since the cat’s story became public, including ones from California, Florida, Pennsylvania and Utah.

The announcement of the kitty’s death set up a fire storm on social media sites.

A few concerned individuals even donated to a fund to cover Tinkerbell’s medical bills, including a young local girl who contributed her “Tooth Fairy money” of $1 to the cause.

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