Champaign Police Department Nabs PETA Award for Kitten Rescue

For Immediate Release:
October 30, 2020

David Perle 202-483-7382

Champaign, Ill. – A Compassionate Police Department Award is on its way from PETA to the Champaign Police Department after Officer Molly McElwee rescued a 6-week-old kitten from a storm drain—and then adopted him.

On October 24, local residents alerted the police department to a crying kitten who’d become trapped in a drain on Town Center Boulevard. When officers arrived on the scene, McElwee climbed into the drain and came back up with the kitten, whom she named Georgie. “Our sergeant ran over to Target to buy some toys, treats, and catnip,” she told PETA. “With those tools, I was able to coax little Georgie into my hands.” The cat is now the newest member of both the Champaign Police Department and McElwee’s home. “He has two other cats and a dog to play with,” she says. “He is a very happy kitten!”

“Thanks to Officer McElwee and the Champaign Police Department, this vulnerable little kitten was rescued from a terrifying, dangerous predicament and given a loving home,” says PETA Vice President Colleen O’Brien. “PETA hopes this story inspires people never to give up when it comes to helping an animal in trouble.”

PETA notes that Georgie is lucky to have been adopted by McElwee, as millions of animals end up in shelters every year and countless others struggle to survive on the streets. That’s why the group encourages guardians to have their animal companions spayed and neutered and to keep cats indoors, where they’ll be safe.

The Champaign Police Department will receive a framed certificate, boxes of delicious vegan cookies, and toys for Georgie and his siblings.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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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

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