Jeffrey Alex Hardin and Christopher Scott Anderson were originally charged with felony animal cruelty, although there is a possibility charges will be dropped. Existing Indiana law refers only to the beating of an animal. The law also offers the caveat that "it is a defense to a prosecution if the person reasonably believes the conduct was necessary to protect the property from destruction or substantial damage," offering an easy out in cases such as this.
A spokesperson for Wal-Mart corporation said earlier that the company is "outraged" by the incident, and that all employees involved would be placed on unpaid suspension. Later, following an internal investigation, four management personnel in the store in question were fired, and a fifth employee has either resigned or been fired. In addition, Wal-Mart has promised a $10,000 donation to be split between two local humane organizations.
Had it not been for a delivery person who overheard two employees joking about shooting a cat, and who the next day saw the two men wrapping the cat in shrink-wrap for disposal, the case may never have come to light. This person cared enough to make a difference, and reported what he saw and heard to the authorities, who took prompt action.