In Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania charges were filed on Thursday against three men who have been accused of torturing an opossum. According to WnepNews, the game commission has charged each suspect with disturbance of wildlife and unlawful taking or possession of game or wildlife, both summary offenses.
The photos of several young men, abusing an opossum by forcing it to drink beer, kissing it and then throwing it into a trash can, caused outrage on social media. The Snapchat photos, posted by at least one student attending Bloomsburg University, showed the group picking the scared animal up by the back of its neck, pouring beer down its throat and over its face, and then tossing the animal into a garbage can. A statement on Facebook by the Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania commented on the disturbing situation:
“Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania
Our investigation continues into the incident involving animal cruelty. We are taking this matter very seriously and do not condone the actions depicted on social media.
Any Bloomsburg University student involved will be subject to the Student Code of Conduct. Any outcomes of the judicial process will be confidential per the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
The university is aware this matter is also being investigated by the Pennsylvania Game Commission.”
The opossum was alive when it was found in a trash can on the property and allegedly captured by the men. The animal was also alive when it had beer poured down its throat and over its head. According to the investigation, the animal survived and “ran” away. The latest press release by the school addressed the investigation:
“Our investigation under the University Student Code of Conduct into the incident involving animal cruelty is near completion. Please remember the judicial process is confidential per the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
As an update on the status of the opossum, the university has learned through eyewitnesses the opossum was alive and ran away upon being released.”
If found guilty the men could each face a $1,500 fine and up to three months in jail.
(Photos of torturing an opossum to drink beer)
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