Group Urges Prosecutor to Act, as Undercover Investigation Shows Rampant Neglect on Farm
For Immediate Release:
January 15, 2021
Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382
Newark, Ohio – “If someone tore a live dog’s head off or tried but failed to break another dog’s neck then left the dog to suffer for days, you would prosecute that person, right?” That’s the message that will appear in Sunday’s Newark Advocate, courtesy of a full-page PETA ad calling on City of Newark Law Director Douglas E. Sassen to authorize a criminal investigation into Trillium Farm Holdings. PETA hopes to see appropriate cruelty-to-animals charges against those responsible for the egregious abuse of hens at the Licking County egg factory.
A PETA undercover investigation revealed that Trillium workers pulled on and twisted hens’ heads in failed attempts to break their necks and left dead hens to decompose alongside survivors in small, cramped cages. In response to PETA’s findings, prosecutors have refused to allow a law-enforcement officer to conduct a criminal investigation, instead instructing the officer to refer the matter to the Ohio Department of Agriculture, which handles only civil regulations and has no jurisdiction to enforce the cruelty-to-animals statute that PETA’s evidence indicates was violated.
“The Trillium workers responsible for slamming birds into boxes, smothering and gassing them, and leaving them to die in cages haven’t faced any repercussions,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “PETA
wants Mr. Sassen to do his duty and the right thing by looking out for hens’ welfare and enforcing the cruelty-to-animals statute that state lawmakers put in place for a reason.”
PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat,” and the group opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. It has protested outside Walmart stores, calling on the company to reassess its relationship with Trillium—whose eggs it sells widely under its Great Value brand—and is posting a billboard near a Walmart store in Columbus highlighting the hens’ “great suffering.”