SPCA ups rewards for arrests in swan, turtle cruelty cases

07/26/2011 3:15 PM |

COURTESY PHOTO

The reward for information leading to the capture of whomever shot an arrow through a swan found in Riverhead last week has swelled from $1,000 to $11,000, authorities said.

The Suffolk Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has also increased the kitty in the probe of a box turtle found with a nail through its shell in Sag Harbor July 5 to $12,500.

The previous award amounts for the turtle award was $1,500.

“Due to public outrage, donations have poured in,” SPCA officials said in a press release Tuesday. The surge in donations allowed the agency to up the reward amounts.

The swan was found by a kayaker near Indian Island County Park on Friday, July 22. It is recovering at the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center in Hampton Bays.

That center also holds a box turtle found in East Hampton last week with a nail hammered through its shell.

The hunting arrow was removed, but the bird is unable walk due to possible nerve damage, said Suffolk SPCA Chief Roy Gross.
“It was not a toy by any means,” he said of the weapon.

He called the attack “very disturbing. This was somebody going out of their way to hurt and animal. And it’s been proven that people who hurt animals hurt people.”

Chief Gross said the SPCA will pursue charges against whomever shot the swan, and added that animal cruelty is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail. The reward money will be given to anyone who provides information that leads to an arrest and conviction.

Call the Suffolk County SPCA at 631-382-7722.  All calls will be kept confidential.

vchinese@timesreview.com