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May 7, 2012

Reward Offered for Information in Illegal Trapping Case that Resulted in Raccoon’s Death

Reward totals $6,000 for dangerous, cruel trap found in densely populated Washington, D.C., neighborhood

Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust

The Humane Society of the United States and The Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust are offering a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person who set a leghold trap in a Northwest neighborhood of Washington, D.C., that resulted in the trapped raccoon having to be euthanized. The HSUS and HSWLT reward adds to an existing reward from the Washington Humane Society, Born Free USA, the Animal Welfare Institute and a private citizen, bringing the total to $6,000.

According to the Washington Humane Society, on April 7, humane officers discovered a raccoon whose leg was caught in a trap in the 3800 block of Yuma Street, NW. The animal was dragging the trap and officers believe the raccoon had been suffering in it for at least a week. The animal’s front bones and tendons were exposed and the raccoon had tried to chew off a leg to get away from the trap. Officers don’t know where the trap was initially set.

“The 2010 DC Wildlife Protection Act rightfully outlawed these cruel and indiscriminate devices, and we implore anyone with information about who set the trap to come forward,” said Elise Traub, wildlife abuse campaign outreach and policy manager for The HSUS. “The Humane Society of the United States thanks the Washington Humane Society for working tirelessly to bring the perpetrators of these crimes to justice.”


Investigators ask that anyone with information about this case call the Washington Humane Society’s Humane Law Enforcement Department at 202-723-5730. Information will be kept confidential upon request.

Facts:

•    The Wildlife Protection Act, passed in December 2010, requires that commercial wildlife control operators be trained and licensed, bans cruel traps, mandates humane euthanasia methods, and establishes much-needed consumer protections. Prior to the Act, wildlife control operators’ activities were unregulated in the District. The law has yet to be implemented, though it is slated to be in place by 2013.
•    Leghold traps can tear the skin and connective tissue and fracture the bones of the victim.
•    The traps can render the animal defenseless against the weather and predators.
•    Animals caught in leghold traps sometimes chew or twist off their limbs.
•    Leghold traps are indiscriminate and can maim or kill any animal that triggers them, including companion animals.
•    The HSUS and HSWLT work with state and federal wildlife agencies to offer rewards of $2,500 for information leading to arrest and conviction of suspected poachers.

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Media Contact: Stephanie Twining, 301-258-1491, stwining@humanesociety.org

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