Elephant Exhibition at Restaurant Prompts Second Round of PETA Complaints in Two Weeks

Harry 'Bones' Craig Continues to Flout the Law, Place Public in Danger

For Immediate Release:
June 5, 2014

Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Pinellas County, Fla – Just weeks after endangering the public by leaving an elephant apparently unattended at a beach party in Pinellas County, elephant exhibitor Harry “Bones” Craig is at it again—this time at a restaurant—and PETA is taking action. The group sent letters this morning to the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission asking them to investigate the latest reports that Craig exhibited Judy the elephant at the George’s on Sunset restaurant in Miami as a gimmick on June 2—apparently violating more state and federal laws against endangering the public in the process.

According to eyewitnesses and photographs, children were allowed to approach the 6,200-pound elephant, who was separated from restaurant patrons only by strips of yellow tape. In addition to its letters to the authorities, PETA asked George’s on Sunset to adopt a policy against stunts such as this one, which place the public in danger: Just last year, a woman was attacked by an elephant at a Florida facility and hospitalized, unable to speak, for nearly two months.

“Every time Bones Craig drags a 6,200-pound elephant into a public place in reach of children, he’s placing the community in danger,” says PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel Delcianna Winders. “Elephants who have been denied everything that is natural and important to them have been known to lash out—and that’s why PETA is calling on authorities to step in and make sure that this man does not continue breaking the law.”

While female elephants in nature spend their entire lives alongside their mothers, sisters, aunts, and cousins, elephants used for entertainment are often kept in isolation—including Judy, who has lived in solitary confinement for decades. In addition, trainers use bullhooks—weapons that resemble fireplace pokers with a sharp metal hook on one end—to jab, hook, and gouge elephants and teach them to obey and perform tricks out of fear of punishment.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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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