Criminal Probe Sought: Bull Repeatedly Shot in Head

For Immediate Release:
November 14, 2019

Contact:
David Perle 202-483-7382

Sioux Falls, S.D. – PETA has obtained a U.S. Department of Agriculture report revealing a recent violation of law at Hudson Meats and Sausage, Inc., in Hudson. In response, PETA sent a letter today calling on Lincoln County State’s Attorney Thomas Wollman to review the matter and, as appropriate, file criminal cruelty-to-animals charges against the facility and the workers responsible for an October 28 incident in which they shot a conscious bull in the head four times, leaving the animal to suffer as the slaughterhouse owner went home to retrieve a larger caliber gun. Upon returning, he finally ended the animal’s ordeal with a fifth shot.

“This disturbing report shows that this bull experienced a prolonged, agonizing death at Hudson Meats and Sausage,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “PETA is calling for a criminal investigation on behalf of the bull who suffered at this facility and urging all compassionate members of the public who are disturbed by this cruelty to go vegan and help prevent more animals from suffering in slaughterhouses.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. The group notes that bulls, sheep, pigs, cows, chickens, and other animals feel pain and fear and value their lives, just as humans do, and that the only way to help prevent them from suffering in slaughterhouses is not to eat them.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

PETA’s letter to Wollman follows.

November 14, 2019

The Honorable Thomas Wollman

Lincoln County State’s Attorney

Dear Mr. Wollman,

I hope this letter finds you well. I would like to request that your office (and the proper local law enforcement agency, as you deem appropriate) investigate and file suitable criminal charges against Hudson Meats and Sausage, Inc., and the worker(s) responsible for shooting a conscious bull in the head five times on October 28 at its slaughterhouse located at 617 4th St. in Hudson. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) documented the incident in the attached report, which states the following:

“A bull was held in the restrainer, ready for slaughter, and as the establishment uses firearm stunning (.22 magnum caliber rifle) the CSI [Consumer Safety Inspector] stepped out of the slaughter area. The CSI heard two shots, and then briefly glanced into the room and noticed the establishment employees gathered near the restrainer, and the bull remained in an upright position near the restrainer box. The CSI closed the door and a third stunning attempt was made. At that time the establishment employee came out the back door and said they needed a larger gun. The CSI went to the cutting area of the facility and to notify the establishment owner, Brady Klarenbeek, of the situation. When the CSI got to the boning room, he was informed that Brady had left the establishment to retrieve a larger gun (.243 caliber firearm) from his residence (approximately 6 blocks away). The CSI returned to the inspection office to notify his supervisor and by the time he returned to the slaughter area, Brady had returned with the .243 firearm and another stunning attempt was made. The CSI then entered the slaughter room and confirmed the bull was unconscious. … [T]he SPHV observed the skull of the carcass and noted five identifiable entry wounds on the forehead. Two penetrated the brain …. The other three entry wounds were rostral to the brain.”[1]

This conduct appears to violate S.D. Codified Laws § 40-1-2.3. Importantly, FSIS action does not preempt criminal liability under state law for slaughterhouse workers who perpetrate acts of cruelty to animals.[2]

Please let us know what we might do to assist you. Thank you for your consideration and for the difficult work that you do.

Sincerely,

Colin Henstock

Assistant Manager of Investigations

[1]FSIS District 25 Manager Dr. Dawn Sprouls, D.V.M., Notice of Suspension, Hudson Meat and Sausage, Inc. (Oct. 29, 2019) https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/wcm/connect/d1c6fd84-3fbb-4ea6-b9f3-dc14a76dc4ad/m18632-hudson-nos-102919.pdf?MOD=AJPERES.

2See Nat’l. Meat Assoc. v. Harris, 132 S. Ct. 965, 974 n.10 (2012) (“. . . States may exact civil or criminal penalties for animal cruelty or other conduct that also violates the [Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA)]. See [21 U.S.C.] §678; cf. Bates v. Dow Agrosciences, LLC, 544 U.S. 431, 447 (2005) (holding that a preemption clause barring state laws ‘in addition to or different’ from a federal Act does not interfere with an ‘equivalent’ state provision). Although the FMIA preempts much state law involving slaughterhouses, it thus leaves some room for the States to regulate.”).

[1]FSIS District 25 Manager Dr. Dawn Sprouls, D.V.M., Notice of Suspension, Hudson Meat and Sausage, Inc. (Oct. 29, 2019) https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/wcm/connect/d1c6fd84-3fbb-4ea6-b9f3-dc14a76dc4ad/m18632-hudson-nos-102919.pdf?MOD=AJPERES.

[2]See Nat’l. Meat Assoc. v. Harris, 132 S. Ct. 965, 974 n.10 (2012) (“. . . States may exact civil or criminal penalties for animal cruelty or other conduct that also violates the [Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA)]. See [21 U.S.C.] §678; cf. Bates v. Dow Agrosciences, LLC, 544 U.S. 431, 447 (2005) (holding that a preemption clause barring state laws ‘in addition to or different’ from a federal Act does not interfere with an ‘equivalent’ state provision). Although the FMIA preempts much state law involving slaughterhouses, it thus leaves some room for the States to regulate.”).

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