Mary Crossley Miller, MD


Hammond, LA

February 11, 2005

Nineteen cats were seized from inside a Hammond mobile home on Feb 11, 2005 after law enforcement officials tracked down the Slidell psychiatrist who had rented hotel rooms for even more cats. Mary Crossley Miller, 65, of General Ott Road, was arrested on 21 counts of animal cruelty and spent the night in the Tangipahoa Parish Jail Wednesday on the charges.

Miller contracted with a bonding agent for a $10,500 bond and was released Thursday, according to parish jail records.

Miller is a psychiatrist and pediatric doctor working in a Slidell clinic, according to parish officials.

The saga began Wednesday morning when 21 emaciated and sick cats were found in a room at the Plaza Inn and Suites, 2010 S. Morrison Blvd.

Tangipahoa Parish Animal Control staffers Bobby Hopson and Shelly Sibley later told sheriff's Deputy Chris Labat that they had to wear face masks and rubber boots to protect themselves upon entering the room and that the cats apparently all had respiratory illness and were emaciated.

Food had been left for them, but the cats had no water for an estimated six days, according to Parish Personnel Director Virginia Baker.

After consulting with a veterinarian, Animal Control was forced to euthanize all 21 cats.

According to sheriff's spokesman Chuck Reed, Miller was contacted to come to Animal Control to pick up the animals and Deputy Labat was called in. Miller was arrested when she arrived at the facility on Club Deluxe Road.

Animal Control officers and sheriff's deputies went to Miller's General Ott Road address with a warrant on Feb 11.

More cats were found living inside a trailer there. Nineteen were brought to Tangipahoa Animal Control and an undetermined number of others escaped. Numerous dogs were also found in the back yard.

Neighbors said they have been complaining of the stench at Miller's trailer for years.

Miller moved in about four years ago, but neighbors said she rarely spent the night at the address. She and others would drop by and dump used cat boxes outside on the ground.

Over the years the stench traveled through much of the neighborhood.

Next door neighbor Teddy Decelle said he complained about the smell to Animal Control three years ago, but no action was taken because officers then found the animals to be well cared for.

Decelle said he has tried to sell his house since then to escape the smell, but the smell chased away potential buyers.

The case is still under investigation, authorities said.


The Daily Star