$2,500 Reward Offered for Help in Nabbing Person Who Poisoned Sea Lions

PETA Calls On the Public for Help in Identifying Perpetrator Who Dumped Chlorine Into Rehabilitation Center's Water System

For Immediate Release:
May 11, 2015

Shakira Croce 202-483-7382

Laguna Beach, Calif. – Between April 27 and 28, more than a dozen sea lions who were recovering at the Pacific Marine Mammal Center became ill when someone contaminated the facility’s water system with chlorine. The sea lions—most of whom were due to be released back into the wild the following day—suffered corneal ulcerations of varying severity. Eight of the sea lions have since healed, while the others continue to be treated by veterinarians on site. The Laguna Beach Police Department is conducting a joint investigation with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), though officials have yet to identify the person or persons responsible.

That’s why PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—is offering a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the culprits.

“It takes an appalling disregard for others to subject helpless, recovering sea lions to this much pain and fear on the eve of their release back to their ocean home,” says PETA Senior Director Colleen O’Brien. “PETA is urging anyone with information to come forward immediately, before someone else is hurt.”

Anyone with information about this case is encouraged to contact Detectives David Gensemer or Abe Ocampo at 949-497-0377 or the NOAA’s hotline at 1-800-853-1964.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind