PETA to Award Ramapo Police for Raccoon Rescue

For Immediate Release:
July 29, 2021

Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382

Suffern, N.Y. – To honor the Ramapo Police Department and Officer Christopher Byrnes for freeing a raccoon whose head had become tightly stuck inside a can, PETA representatives will present the officers with a special Compassionate Police Department Award and a delicious vegan spread from Carmines Italian Deli Cafe on Monday. Officers responded to a homeowner’s call about the panicked animal on Sunday, July 25, and after several attempts, Byrnes managed to remove the can, and the raccoon scurried off into the woods, unharmed.

When:    Monday, August 2, 11 a.m.

Where:    Ramapo Police Department, 237 NY-59, Suffern

“Without the persistence of Officer Byrnes, this terrified raccoon could have endured a slow, miserable death,” says PETA Vice President Colleen O’Brien. “PETA hopes this story inspires others to give animals in need a helping hand.”

PETA offers tips for living in harmony with wildlife and disposing of trash properly, including by tightly sealing all garbage in chew-proof containers, rinsing out aluminum cans and dropping the pop-tops inside so that they can’t cut an animal’s tongue, crushing cans, putting the tops back on bottles and jars, and cutting open empty cardboard and plastic containers so that small animals can’t get their faces or heads trapped inside them.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way” and which opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview—will also have posters for the officers to distribute reminding people to recycle cans properly. Photos will be available after the award is presented. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

For Media: Contact PETA's
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

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind