Owner of popular LA restaurant accuses co-chef of killing her cats

The married co-chefs of the trendy Hollywood restaurant Horses are in a cat fight — as in one has accused the other of killing her cats.

Elizabeth Johnson, who ran the Jewish deli Freedman's in Silver Lake before opening Horses in 2021, claims in a divorce filing that her husband and business partner, Will Aghajanian, shook their new kitten to death. (Aghajanian ironically opened up a restaurant called Catbird before Horses.)

"Will and I have had cats that mysteriously ended up dying, including one in 2017 who I took to a shelter when she became seriously wounded overnight. The shelter told me she had been seriously abused, but Will denied it," she said, explaining that, in denial herself, they then got a new kitten — which, you guessed it, did not go well.

From the LA Times:

[Johnson] claims that Aghajanian joked about feeding the kitten to coyotes and said he didn't like the cat, according to the filing. Eventually, she alleges she witnessed him hurting their cat, she wrote in the filing.

"I caught Will violently shaking the cat late at night, and he died the next day," she wrote. "Will put the dead cat in the trash and insisted on keeping the corpse in the house." …

A judge in the case approved the domestic violence restraining order in December and reissued it on May 1, according to court documents.

In his own filing for a restraining order, Aghajanian requested custody back of the dogs Pancho and Javi, saying that Johnson "misled the Court into making orders against me." …

Aghajanian claimed that he was the victim in the marriage. He claimed that Johnson threatened to kill him repeatedly and burned him at least twice with a metal spatula and a spoon she had first placed into a fryer, according to court filings.

Welp, I've never eaten at Horses and I don't live far from it, but after reading this unappetizing article, I think I'll pass.