WEST ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) – A 48-year-old West St. Paul man is accused of assaulting another man after he told the man not to let his dog mess with his cat, according to charges filed in Dakota County Court Friday.
James Douglas Strobel was charged with one felony count of terroristic threats and one misdemeanor count of fifth-degree assault in connection with the incident.
According to a criminal complaint, West St. Paul Police were called to the area of Bernard Street and MacArthur Street at 12:55 a.m. on Oct. 5 on a report of a disturbance. Two men were apparently yelling at each other and someone had mentioned a gun.
When authorities arrived, nobody was there but another call came in for a nearby address. A man at that address told police he had been assaulted while walking his dog. He told police he was walking his dog near his residence when they came across a cat on the sidewalk.
The complaint states the man stomped on the ground to scare the cat away so the cat and dog wouldn’t have a confrontation. A man later identified as Strobel yelled at the man to not “mess” with his cat. The two exchanged words and Strobel said he would beat him up.
The man ignored him and started walking down the street when Strobel and another younger male attacked the victim from behind, throwing punches and kicking him, the complaint states.
A witness to the assault came out of a nearby house and the attack ended with Strobel and the other male running back to Strobel’s residence.
The victim had dropped the leash for his dog during the attack and was search for the dog, and when he got near Strobel’s home, Strobel yelled at him that he was going to get his gun and shoot the victim and the dog.
Strobel was later arrested at his home and denied to police that he assaulted the man. He said the cat might have distemper.
If convicted, Strobel faces up to more than five years in prison and $11,000 in fines.