An Accomack County, Virginia man says that PETA employees came onto his property and stole his family’s beloved chihuahua. Days later PETA representatives came to his home and told him the dog had been euthanized.
According to WAVY.com, Wilbur Cerate noticed Maya missing one Saturday in October when she failed to greet him when he arrived home. “My chihuahua, when she sees my car, she come to me,” Cerate said. “That Saturday she did not come.”
He said the dog, which was well cared for and has a good home, brought comfort to his daughter, who moved to the area from Mexico.
When Cerate checked his security camera, the video revealed that a van with “PETA” on the side had backed into his driveway and two women got out. One of the women walked onto his porch, grabbed Maya, and put her in the back of the van.
Three days later, the two women from PETA were back — with a fruit basket. They told the family that poor Maya had been euthanized. When they failed to provide proof of the dog’s death, Cerate called the police.
“I was angry. I understand they pick up my dog, if it was in a tree or another place, but this is in my house,” Cerate said.
Accomack County Sheriff Todd Godwin told WAVY.com he charged the PETA workers with larceny. He said pets are considered personal property. But the local commonwealth’s attorney told WAVY.com he dropped the charges because there wasn’t enough evidence to prosecute. He said the video does not show criminal intent, so he declined to take the case to court. Now, the Cerate family may never get closure.
“We don’t have an answer about why,” Cerate said.
WAVY.com made several attempts to contact PETA to get proof about what happened to Maya and to figure out why she was taken. None of our calls were returned.
Last year the Daily Mail reported about the sickeningly high euthanization rates at PETA’s Virginia facility:
Animal rights charity PETA killed almost 90 per cent of dogs and cats placed in the care of the shelter at its Virginia headquarters last year, it has been revealed today.
The charity, well-known for attention grabbing publicity campaigns such as the ‘I’d rather go naked’ anti-fur campaign, euthanized 1,647 cats and dogs last year and only placed 19 in new homes according to the data submitted to the Virginia Department for Agriculture and Consumer Services.
A spokeswoman for PETA told the Daily Mail, “We have a small division that does hands-on work with animals, and most of the animals we take in are society’s rejects; aggressive, on death’s door, or somehow unadoptable.”
Wilbur Cerate told WAVY.com that his daughter is devastated at the loss of her beloved Maya. “She didn’t want to go to school, she didn’t want to do jobs, she’s crying,” he said.