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Reward Offered in Calf Found in Dumpster Case Near Saginaw, Michigan

The Humane Society of the United States is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for leaving an emaciated calf to die a trash container near Saginaw, Michigan.

The Case: On the morning of Saturday, Sept. 12, an employee of a Gander Mountain store in Kochville Township called officials after discovering a live, black and white calf, weighing an estimated 80 to 100 pounds, in a trash container outside the store. When Sheriff’s officials arrived at the scene, the calf was still alive with a faint pulse, but he died before animal control officers and a veterinarian could provide assistance.

According to Saginaw County Sheriff, William Federspiel, the calf had a U.S. Department of Agriculture ear tag and was extremely emaciated, but did not have obvious signs of injury. USDA officials said the calf came from a farm in Stanton in Montcalm County. The Sheriff’s department will pursue animal cruelty charges.

Animal Cruelty: Getting the serious attention of law enforcement, prosecutors and the community in cases involving allegations of cruelty to animals is an essential step in protecting the community. The connection between animal cruelty and human violence is well documented. Studies show a correlation between animal cruelty and all manner of other crimes, from narcotics and firearms violations to battery and sexual assault.

Michigan’s animal cruelty statute prohibits the neglect and abandonment of any animal, including farm animals, and prohibits allowing an animal that is aged, diseased, maimed, hopelessly sick, disabled or non-ambulatory to suffer unnecessary neglect, torture or pain.

“Any person who could demonstrate such thoughtless disregard for the prolonged suffering of a defenseless, young animal is a hazard to the community at large,” said Jill Fritz, Michigan senior state director for The HSUS. “We are grateful to the Saginaw County Sheriff’s Office for pursuing criminal charges in this case, and hope that any eyewitnesses will step forward to help ensure that those responsible for this terrible crime are brought to justice.”

The Investigators: The Saginaw County Sheriff’s office is conducting a joint investigation of this case with the USDA. Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Sergeant Kerns at 989-790-5446, or can call 911.

Resources: The HSUS Animal Cruelty Campaign raises public awareness and educates communities about the connection between animal cruelty and human violence while providing a variety of resources to law enforcement agencies, social work professionals, educators, legislators and families. The HSUS offers rewards in animal cruelty cases across the country and works to strengthen laws against animal cruelty.

The National Sheriffs’ Association and The HSUS recently launched ICE BlackBox, a free smartphone tool, to allow users to record video of illegal animal cruelty and share it securely with law enforcement for possible investigation and prosecution. 

The HSUS recently doubled its standard cruelty reward from $2,500 to $5,000 thanks to a generous donation from an HSUS board member. To see information on statistics, trends, laws and animal cruelty categories, click here.  


Media Contact: Samantha Miller: 301-258-1466; smiller@humanesociety.org


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