UPDATE Wednesday, December 7, 8 p.m.: According to Chief Jason Shaw with the Elizabethton Police Department, animal cruelty charges have been filed against the reported juvenile.

Shaw told News Channel 11 officials normally can’t disclose any juvenile information, but confirmed that the charges were filed in juvenile court due to the incident being “of such public concern.”

ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. (WJHL) — Police and school leaders in Elizabethton are looking into an incident involving a juvenile and an animal.

Viewers sent News Channel 11 videos posted to social media of a reported juvenile male from Elizabethton punching a cat. News Channel 11 reached out to the Elizabethton Police Department (EPD) Wednesday morning regarding the alleged incident and was told that investigators are actively looking into it.

Later Wednesday, the EPD posted on Facebook to let the community know that they had received multiple messages and inquiries regarding “the incident with the animal and juvenile.” Police stated in the post that Elizabethton High School was also aware of the concerns.

“Our department is investigating the incident and are working as promptly as they can,” the post reads. “While we understand the frustration, and the many concerns, the law still has to be followed. Unfortunately, investigations do take time. We understand the importance of this case, and the Department wants to assure everyone the safety of both the children and the community as a whole is our top priority.”

News Channel 11 also reached out to Elizabethton City Schools and received the following response from director of schools Richard VanHuss:

“The district is aware of public concern regarding some information circulating on social media. As always, school and system officials are working to ensure the safety of all students and staff. School safety continues to be a top priority for the district.”

Richard VanHuss, Director of Elizabethton City Schools

This is a developing story. Stay with News Channel 11 online and on-air for updates.