The owner of a Manhattan plant store claims a cat-sitter won’t return his kitty — the star attraction of his shop — after she offered to take care of it while his business temporarily closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, new court papers show.
“She stole my cat,” said Zivadin “Chris” Krstic the owner of Chelsea shop Chris King of Foliage. “She doesn’t want to return it.”
Krstic — who describes himself as a one-time Yugoslavian boxing champion and former model who appeared in spaghetti westerns in the 70s — alleges Amanda Walker requested to watch Sammy the cat while his emporium was closed from March to May, according to his Manhattan Supreme Court lawsuit.
Walker had been stopping by the store weekly just to see Sammy, who lived at the store, for years and she had even “asked to adopt or purchase Sammy” from him — but the offer “was repeatedly rejected,” the court papers, filed Wednesday, claim.
On March 21, Walker sent a text to an employee who was taking care of the cat while Krstic, 79, was stuck in Florida at his other home as he was advised by his doctors not to travel, the court papers say.
“Hi! This is Amanda, Sammy’s friend,” Walker wrote in the text, according to the court documents. “Please let me know if I can help take care of Sammy! I love him! Hope you are safe and well.”
So Krstic allowed Walker to take care of Sammy while the store was temporarily closed. And after the store reopened Walker kept asking “to keep Sammy for a few extra days,” the suit says.
Soon after, the Kips Bay woman “began purposefully avoiding plaintiffs and refusing to answer calls and messages from them,” the court papers allege.
Walker even threatened to get a restraining order as Krstic persistently tried to get his cat back, the court documents say.
“I kept calling her begging her to give me my cat back,” Krstic told The Post.
Krstic says he’s distraught. He had Sammy for four years at the store since he was a kitten, and the fur-ball has been a huge draw for customers ever since, the court papers say.
“Young kids love my cat. They come to see me and I let them go to say hello to Sammy,” Krstic said.
Krstic recalled Walker saying, “‘I don’t have a boyfriend. He’s good company and you don’t clean his teeth.’”
“The cat is perfectly healthy. I take care of him like my own children. It’s very sad. I can do nothing. My cat is like part of me,” Krstic lamented.
“She is hiding. I tried the nice way and then finally I say … we have to go to the court and let the court decide,” Krstic said.
Krstic’s lawyer, Robert Hantman, told The Post that if Walker “was lonely, match.com is the answer rather than catnapping Sammy.”
Krstic is asking a judge to order Walker to return his cat. He is also seeking other unspecified damages.
Walker did not immediately return a request for comment.
Credit: NYPOST Newzandar News