A Win for Songbirds! State Supreme Court Rules in PETA’s Favor Over LSU Experiment Records

For Immediate Release:
July 1, 2024

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

Baton Rouge, La.

The Louisiana Supreme Court has ruled in favor of PETA in the group’s public records lawsuit against Louisiana State University, affirming that the school must turn over records related to university experimenter Christine Lattin’s cruel and deadly taxpayer-funded experiments on songbirds she captures, cages, and kills. PETA first filed its lawsuit in December 2020 after the school failed to release documents pursuant to the group’s public records requests.

The court declared that the public records law “must be construed expansively in favor of free and unrestricted access to public documents” and ruled that the university must turn over veterinary-care records for birds who have been captured, tormented, and killed in Lattin’s experiments; videos of her experiments; and records related to her successful attempt to lobby Baton Rouge officials to change the city’s bird-protection ordinance. The ordinance prohibited trapping or harming wild birds, but it was changed in 2020 to exempt experimentation, apparently following pressure from Lattin. 

LSU protest in september
PETA supporters protest Lattin’s experiments. Credit: PETA

“Wild birds were seized from their natural homes, caged, mutilated, and killed at a public university that masquerades atrocities as science and has made every attempt to keep the public in the dark about what went on,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “PETA thanks the Louisiana Supreme Court for requiring Louisiana State University to abide by the law and calls on the school to shut down Lattin’s shameful experiments.”

Since at least 2008, Lattin has trapped hundreds of wild birds for her curiosity-driven experiments, in which she has pumped them full of drugs and hormones, fed them crude oil, wounded their legs, plucked their feathers, exposed them to terrifying predator sounds, and forced them to endure other forms of torment. At the end of the experiments, she kills them.

New Orleans–based attorney Alysson Mills represented PETA at trial and on appeal.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—points out that Every Animal Is Someone and offers free Empathy Kits for people who need a lesson in kindness. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on X, Facebook, or Instagram.

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