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Protest at Petland Employee’s Court Hearing

Written by PETA | August 18, 2009

Last week, Elizabeth Carlisle appeared in court to face cruelty-to-animals charges for allegedly drowning two rabbits while she was working at a Petland store in Akron, Ohio. On the day of Carlisle’s arraignment, local PETA members and other outraged members of the community stood outside the courthouse calling on Akron’s chief city prosecutor, Douglas J. Powley, to prosecute Carlisle to the fullest extent of the law.

The maximum penalty for each cruelty-to-animals charge is six months in jail—totaling a year in prison if Carlisle is found guilty.
Elizabeth Carlisle hearing
Two peaceful protesters were pushed by members of Carlisle’s entourage as they left the building.Elizabeth Carlisle hearing
Want to get involved? Use this form to urge Petland to end rabbit sales immediately. Elizabeth Carlisle hearing

This incident is just one example of the abuses animals suffer in pet stores nationwide. For nearly 30 years, PETA has fielded complaints regarding sick or unwanted animals who were cruelly disposed of by pet store employees, all because the cost of caring for or treating the animal exceeded the animal’s “price tag.” This trial offers an opportunity to send a strong and desperately needed message to the pet-store industry: Pet stores have no business selling animals.

Written by Liz Graffeo

Commenting is closed.
  • N. Horn says:

    I am surprised there is no mention of VetSelect Vet Hospitals that have a contract with Petland and take care of all the sick animals before they go into the stores…that is the ones that actually live go to the stores.

  • Sharon says:

    Is PETA or other groups pursuing anything against Petsmart and similar stores? It would be great if corporations were pursued.

  • Jillianne says:

    What about the person who stood by and watched her drown the bunnies and took the picture. Are they being charged as well? Are they not an Accessory in the act of animal cruelty?

  • Elphaba says:

    Stop the presses everybody Edward doesn’t think this case is interesting enough!

  • Iris says:

    I’d like to know about the verdict as well. I really hope she got what she deserved.

  • Deborah says:

    Does anyone know what happened in court today? I swear if she gets off I will lose it. I hope PeTA will come bail me out of jail bc I’m afraid of what I’ll do if I EVER cross paths with her. Luckily I live thousands of miles away. Please tell me she’s doing time.

  • Debbie says:

    The previously mentioned “Wall of Shame” idea is a good idea. Sort of like the Darwin awards for the animal abusers. The cat serial killer too…he is another one who is very scary and his stupid girlfriend who should be brought up on charges too kept bringing home cats after he would kill or abuse them. After the first one died there should have been a big red flag. Then she got two more kittens he hurt them horribly then she gets two more. Finally an anonymous tip to the Humane Society got him. But I see her as bringing in the animals and not paying attention to clues. Sounds like someone who just had to have a boyfriend at any price. Makes me sick. I hope this Liz is hounded.

  • Kristen Boltz says:

    Hi. I’m located in Canton Ohio and my truck is broken down so I can’t get a ride to her trial protest in Akron. I’m willing to offer a little gas money if someone could bring me and two of my Great Danes to protest. They will be wearing signs like “My ears got infected and it cost over $1000 to fix. Would you drown me?” And… “I ruptured a ligament in my hind leg. It was very costly. Would you drown me?” If you think you can help get a hold of me at or Kristen Boltz on facebook. Thank you.

  • Emiliab says:

    stop cruelty

  • Edward says:

    Elphaba How about you stop trying to pretend that you are better than everyone else because you’re not. You think that the Bat Signal goes out for you everytime someone does not believe PETA in an issue. No one relies on you to go apes crazy on people that don’t agree with PETA. The news PETA brings in this blog is OK but I want to hear about the news that really makes people become an activist. My opinion differs drastically from you and PETA’s opinion about what is newsworthy. I think that cooked cats deserve more attention than fur fuglies.

  • Bailey says:

    I’m saddened to hear that the laws in Ohio are that lax in terms of cruelty to animals. Here in NYC had she done this she could face a maximum of 2 years for each count of Cruelty to animals. Sadly I think that is still to little and usually the perpetrators that have no criminal record plea it down to 1 year for both counts.

  • Terri says:

    I am so glad to see this person both prosecuted and persecuted. She not only killed those rabbits but also had herself photographed with their dead little bodies AND posted it on her FaceBook page!!! Not only is she cruel she’s stupid too! May she burn in hell or jail for as long as it takes.

  • CAROLYN says:


  • roxy fisher says:

    I would like to protest at elizabeths day job which is sally beauty supply in tallmadge. please let me know if you would like to join me and protest against the Slaying of Rabbits and all the products sallys carries that is Tested on animals. my emeil is

  • Rev. Meg Schramm says:

    In a previous post I suggested a “Hall Of Shame” exhibit for an animal empathy museum. I now suggest a special section of the hall be reserved for abusers who were animal care workers Pet shop employees pet sitters kennel workers veterinarians or veterinary assistants factory farm workers and zookeepers. Good old Liz would fit right in there.

  • Elphaba says:

    Hey Edward give them a freaking break! Do you have any idea how many cruelty complaints PETA gets EVERY SINGLE DAY? On top of that they do actually work on getting justice for the animals they do receive complaints about but I’m sure they’re very sorry they couldn’t tear themselves away from that important work to respond to your email the very second you sent it. My guess is that a. they already know about this case and are on top of it though it may not be getting publicity b. they know about the case and if local law enforcement has things under control wisely chose to direct limited time and resources toward cases that AREN’T being handled but should be or c. your email was the first they’ve heard and they will look into the situation and get back to you when they can. So have a little patience with the people who work very hard every day to help animal victims of cases most of us couldn’t handle dealing with.

  • erica says:

    Recently I visited a petsmart for some petfood shopping for my doggies and turtles and I saw tank of ferrets with no food or water and a pile of poo a few inches high I asked a employee to let me see one of them she opened it and said to get them myself cuZ there sick and she’s scared of them!!! There eyes had mucus in them and there nose was crusty with dry mucus I had complained to them saying to feed and clean them and all they did was say sure ok rolling her eyes I looked at her and spit in her face and walked outta there I don’t regret what I did. But what Ido regret is not taking it further then I shouldve

  • Peri McMillan says:

    I cannot fathom how anyone could abuse defenseless animals. They are not human. They are monsters to do things like that. BTW I’m sure that Elizabeth Carlisle’s parents must be so proud of her for what she did to those poor defenseless bunnies.

  • Abby says:

    What I’m curious about after reading this is that Elizabeth Carlisle had an “entourage” who shoved protestors probably trying to start something.

  • Matt Greenwood says:

    Way Tp Go PETA! Well done to everybody that helped Demonstrate outside the court! Does anyone know the Court Verdict if so how long did she get??

  • Edward says:

    FYI I have emailed them about the news article…still no reply. I just have a soft spot for cats which is why I’m more concerned about those cats.

  • Anonymous says:

    you can’t judge an entire corporation based on the actions of individuals

  • Carol says:

    There has been some talk in the Toronto Sun comment section because of an abused Chow and someone said they seen worse and they were from Mary Kay CosmeticsTesting.

  • Ciara says:

    Hi everyone i was wondering if anyone knew about this american woman Teressa GroenewaldHagerman. She went on safari in Africa and shot an elephant with a cross bow and left it to die. If you look at you’ll see some info on it. I haven’t read anything about it on PETA.

  • Iris Hahn says:

    I am so disgusted with the employees responsible. But I am glad that PETA is after this case. You have my complete support and I hope the bunny killers get maximum sentences.

  • Jackie says:

    That’s terrible Edward. However as much as PETA would like to they’re not omnipresent. Perhaps you should email them about the news story. Also did the monkey costume remind anyone besides me of the Ape Escape video games?

  • Holly Grigg says:

    Elizabeth Carlisle is a symptom of a much bigger problem. She should get the maximum punishment and Petland should close it’s doors!!!!

  • Vali says:

    Nice work guys

  • Becca says:

    I remember years ago seeing dead and decaying reptiles in their glass cages at local Petsmarts. I was appalled and saddened. I’d tell management about it and they’d react like it was just a minor inconvenience. It’s very disturbing that this sort of thing has not only continued in “pet shops” but has also escalated into worse neglect.

  • Bananas says:

    Maybe you should bring that matter to PETAs attention and they would look into it??!! They dont magically know about every case of animal cruelty the public has to be appauld enough to notify them.

  • Brien Comerford says:

    Animal rights advocates and vegetarians are the true defenders of God’s creatures. Many Churches have pig roasts and other disgusting animal corpse eating rituals. The girl who killed the rabbits is a REPROBATE INCARNATE !

  • matt says:

    hey mlo…you seem really concerned that we all give equal attention to each and every case of animal abuse…i TOTALLY agree! which ones are you going to protest? oh…none? then why do you care that people are focusing on this one? there are many many cases of animal abuse each day in the world…hell its animal abuse ach and every burger mcnugget or hot dog sold…so dont find fault with those voicing outrage over ANY case…theres more than enough to get riled up about.

  • Diane says:

    Edward if Peta was aware of that that probably would have paid very close attention. Peta can’t know of every single cruelty incident on earth during every given moment. There is too much cruelty in the world for Peta to solve alone.

  • Amanda says:

    9 Years of working at Petsmart … They do the EXACT same thing. It’s “Cheaper” to “euthanize” an animal “by securing it in a plastic bag and letting it go to sleep in the freezer but make sure it is dead before you throw it in to the dumpster”. Yes that was a quote out of my managers mouth !!! I quit and am now aiming to tell everyone about Petsmarts cruelty !!!!

  • Brian says:

    To the comment on the bottom I’m sure if you bring it up to our attention IF we have not already heard of it we will bring it up and if possible take action or mention it. No animal left behind. All animal abuse is considered on any level horrible.

  • Jennifer says:

    This is an unspeakable crime and the photograph posted online shows that Liz Carlisle is more than just cruel. She was bragging about her act and the glee on her face in the photo is disturbing. There is something wrong with someone who can have pride in this sort of act. Her lawyer says she is an animal lover…then as an animal lover and employee of Petland purchase the rabbits with your employee discount and get them the medical attention they need and deserve! How did any employee at Petland live with themselves knowing that each day those rabbits were suffering. How does Liz Carlisle sleep at night knowing how scared they must have been as she viciously drowned them. The photo and blog post show she had no remorse until she got caught. I hope justice is served and she gets the maximum sentence.

  • alex says:

    But Edward they are concentrating on this to save hundreds and thousands of innocent creatures being tortured in Petland stores throughout the U.S. PETA cares about every animal and they probably are paying attention to that. Be grateful for what they are doing because without them there would be a lot more cruelty .

  • M says:

    great turnout right on! I hope to see a bigger turnout for this monsters trial in september! They need to hear our voices more than ever now after her not guilty plea!

  • Charlese says:

    I am happy to see all these loving caring people taking the time to stant out there in the sun hold those signs. Way to go!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Wesley says:

    Eating kittens is just sick. Why would someone do such a thing?

  • Kristen says:

    She is sick..I hope she gets sentenced. I’m glad that there are caring people out here who stand up for animals!

  • Laurie says:

    She needs to do hard time for what she did. Thank you PETA for all your hard work.

  • Edward says:

    I have heard way worse instances of animal abuse on the news. I heard that a man bred cats in apalling living conditions so he could eat their kittens. Why isn’t PETA paying attention to that?

  • mlo says:

    Great protest awesome turnout.