After six days trapped atop three burnt Astoria houses, a neighborhood cat was rescued with the assistance of the 114th Precinct of the NYPD. Neighbor Tracy Levine persisted tirelessly to gain assistance to rescue the trapped cat, named Hunka Munka, who went missing last Wednesday night. As first reported here yesterday, the FDNY told her, “We don’t get paid enough.” Calls to 311, the ACC (Animal Care & Control) and the ASPCA did not result in any assistance.
Officer Scocca, Officer Cascio and Officer Sayan from the 114th Precinct came to the buildings in Queens this morning.
Levine recounted, “After calling the 114th precinct since Thursday incessantly, I finally found a cop with a heart.”
The three officers arrived at the buildings this morning around 9:30 a.m. Tracy knew that the cat had gone into the trap at some point between 3 a.m. and 6:30 a.m.
She said, “At 3 a.m., the cat was still outside screaming.” Until that point, “even with my windows closed, I could hear her screaming and howling.”
A cat trap had been placed on top of the building with food 2 1/2 days ago, but, up until the wee hours of this morning, the feline had not gone inside. The next plan, if this had not worked, was to place a “plank” so the normally free-roaming cat, who Tracy looks after in the neighborhood, might climb down.
With relief in her voice, Levine said, “Along the way, I almost got arrested for trespassing. It’s been an ordeal.”
The three connected houses at 3085, 3087, and 3089 23rd Street were in a 2 Alarm fire on March 10, 2016. Last week, the houses were opened up; that is when the cat climbed inside. When boarded back up, there was no exit available and she made her way to the roof.
After the daring rescue, Levine took the cat immediately to her vet; dehydrated, the feline was given fluids. It is expected that Hunka Munka can go home today. What a story she can tell her cat friends!
A happy ending to this sitting-on-the-edge-of-your-seat story.
One thing we can learn from it: Let’s switch things up in how some people look at outdoor cats, so that, should a situation like this occur again, assistance will be given to any living being, whether a free-roaming cat or someone’s house “pet.”
On Twitter, the 114th Precinct proudly tweeted a picture of the three officers with cat after the rescue with the caption: #ITSWHATWEDO
Thanks to everyone who commented and offered to help. Kudos to Tracy Levine and everyone who assisted along the way and, of course, the New York City Police Department 114th Precinct! Job well done!
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A screen shot from video Levine took: The black and white amidst this scene is the cat atop the roof, at one point, she looked over the edge; she constantly cried and meowed for help:
Photos: courtesy Tracy Levine