A Virginia man is making the claim that PETA entered his property, stole his dog, then euthanized her – and he’s got some pretty solid evidence to back it up.
Wilbur Cerate described his family’s Chihuahua, Maya, as very well loved and cared for, with a loving family and home. That’s why he’s so confused as to why an organization that’s supposed to look out for animals took her and euthanized her.
Every day, when Wilbur pulled into the driveway, little Maya would run outside to greet him. One Saturday in October, his tiny welcoming committee was nowhere to be found. After searching the house, yard, and asking neighbors, he checked the surveillance video that films his front porch.
What he saw both surprised and confused him. He watched as a white box van, with the PETA logo clearly written on its side, backed into his driveway. Two women exited the van, one walked up the stairs and onto his front porch, picked up little Maya, and put her in the back before the pair drove off.
“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 told WAVY 10 News.
Three days later, both women visited the Cerate home again, this time with a fruit basket and devastating news – little Maya had been euthanized. Cerate immediately called police, hoping for charges against the women and the organization responsible.
The local sheriff charged the PETA workers with larceny, as dogs are considered simple personal property, but the commonwealth’s attorney dropped all charges, claiming that the video showed no criminal intent. (what?!)
But, after digging further, WAVY 10 News learned that stealing a dog is considered a Class 5 felony according to the Code of Virginia.
Many questions remain unanswered. Why did PETA enter private property to take a well-cared for family dog? Why did they euthanize her? Why were charges dropped, despite video evidence? 10 News continues to investigate.