Owner of ‘Miska,’ the notorious Bellevue cat, wins $125,000 settlement

BELLEVUE, Wash. — The owner of a notorious cat in Bellevue named “Miska” has won a $125,000 settlement from Bellevue and King County.

The outcome followed a three-year court battle.

The litigation stemmed from about $30,000 in fines and more than 30 violations for the cat’s alleged behavior.

Dating back to 2014, Regional Animal Services of King County, contracted by the City of Bellevue, issued violations for claims that Miska trespassed, taunted other pets in the neighborhood and committed other infractions.

“Miska is the most prosecuted cat in King County and in the City of Bellevue,” Jon Zimmerman, attorney for Miska’s owner, Anna Danieli, said in October 2020.

In response, Danieli filed a lawsuit alleging governmental overreach, arguing her neighbor is an animal control manager involved in many of the complaints.

Danieli’s attorneys also believed Miska’s violations should be voided because the City of Bellevue did not properly update its domestic cat code.

Danieli’s two-man legal team sought reimbursement for costs incurred and brought civil rights claims against King County, the City of Bellevue and other government entities and officials.

In addition to the $125,000 settlement, the lawsuit spurred a court order that resulted in changes to Bellevue’s City Code and the way that civil offenses involving animals are heard.