HARRISBURG, Pa. — The Pennsylvania State Police charged 11 people for allegedly abusing turkeys at seven farms across central and southeastern Pennsylvania.
The defendants were employed by Plainville Farms, a New Oxford, Pennsylvania-based company, to capture and crate turkeys destined for food processing plants, according to state police. Criminal complaints allege the defendants kicked, stomped and beat turkeys at farms in Chester, Cumberland, Franklin, Fulton, Perry and Union counties.
The investigation, which started in August 2021, resulted from a complaint filed by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. A PETA employee recorded the turkey catchers, and PETA released the video last year.
Plainville Farms markets its turkey as being humanely raised in a stress-free environment. In response to the investigation, Plainville told Lancaster Farming it would bring in third-party auditors for unannounced inspections, increase employee training and distribute body cameras to track workers who deal with live birds. Those charged were fired by the company.
The charges include six felony counts of aggravated cruelty to animals, 76 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty, and 57 related summary offenses.
The defendants are identified as Bryce P. Washington, 26; Miguel Turi Cantellano, 65; Juan Turi Baeza, 37; all of McSherrystown; Jason K. Turner, 22; Bryiant O. Perez-Paez, 40, both of Hanover; Francisco M. Lebron-Cruz, 39, of Thomasville, Jose E. Turi Baeza, 29, of New Oxford; Kevin L. Wagaman, 49, of Fayetteville; Mitchell E. Buckley, 23, of Aspers; Christopher S. McArdle, 37, of Gettysburg; and Joseph Nunez Rosario, 41, of York. Another individual involved has not been identified.
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