Police Recover Stolen ‘Hell on Wheels’ Chicken Truck; Thieves Sought

For Immediate Release:
July 10, 2023

Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Portland, Ore.

After a four-day search, police have found PETA’s “Hell on Wheels” chicken transport truck—heavily vandalized and abandoned—near the Brentwood-Darlington neighborhood, where it was stolen last week. The thieves are still being sought, but the group, which offered a reward of up to $5,000 and a year’s supply of vegan chicken to tipsters whose information led to the truck’s recovery, will be delivering delicious vegan chicken sandwiches to the Portland Police Bureau in thanks for finding the stolen vehicle. Photos are available here.

On Friday, a police officer found the truck stripped of its exterior wrap, which had shown real chickens crammed into crates on their way to a slaughterhouse and a logo of a chef holding a dead bird. All of its sound equipment and electronic components were missing. The criminals—who left behind a homemade set of “jiggler” keys used to steal the truck—also damaged the back door, cracked the windshield, and punched out the ignition, which PETA will now have to replace, and the national chicken truck tour has been disrupted. Police have video footage of the suspects, who even drove the truck to a local Taco Bell restaurant for lunch, and are pursuing them.

“The ‘Hell on Wheels’ truck was stolen and gutted, but PETA is unruffled and racing to continue driving home its message of compassion for millions of these gentle birds,” says PETA Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA appreciates the public outpouring of support and looks forward to getting the truck back on the road, turning omnivores into vegans.”

The group had been on tour, driving the truck to cities around the U.S., where it has circled eateries and meaty food fairs, blasting actual recorded sounds of the birds’ cries and a subliminal message every 10 seconds urging people to go vegan. “Hell on Wheels” was in the Portland area to honor the hundreds of birds who died after a transporter carrying them overturned on I-5.

Anyone who would like to donate to the truck’s repair can do so at PETA.org/Donate.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview, and offers a free vegan starter kit on its website. For more information, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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