UPDATE 11/19/12 @ 2 p.m.
POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Neighborhood pet lover Lynda Ealey has more than half a dozen neighborhood cats in her care.
"I'm worried about what's happening," Ealey said. "Animals didn't ask to be born. We need to watch out for them."
Ealey is like several people in the North Main Neighborhood near the old, abandoned Marietta plant. Rumors of animal abuse and carcasses near the riverbank have some on high alert.
"I felt I needed to bring it to Council's attention" Councilman Alan Moran said. "If people abuse animals, who knows what they're capable of doing?"
Moran said during a recent council meeting that a constituent told him dead cats were dumped into the Ohio River and appeared to have been tortured.
Point Pleasant Police Chief Ernie Watterson is asking people to pay close attention to what's going on in their neighborhoods but is urging caution.
"Only once in the past several years have we gotten a formal complaint about animal abuse" Chief Ernie Watterson said. "Pay attention to your animals, but I don't think there's any cause for panic or alarm."
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The Point Pleasant Register says it's received reports of two separate incidents in which cats were abducted and tortured.
Councilman Allen Moran said during a recent council meeting that a constituent told him dead cats were dumped into the Ohio River and appeared to have been tortured.
Mayor Brian Billings says a police officer has been assigned to investigate the reports.