Turkey Farm Workers Hit With 100+ Cruelty Charges

Police say workers 'kicked, stomped, and beat turkeys' at 11 Pennsylvania farms
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 7, 2022 7:51 AM CDT
11 Turkey Farm Workers Charged in Massive Cruelty Bust
Stock photo of young turkeys at a farm.   (Getty Images/ene)

Eleven turkey farm workers in Pennsylvania are facing what PETA says is "the largest number of charges in any factory-farmed animal case in US history." Police say the workers "kicked, stomped, and beat turkeys" at seven farms. the York Daily Record reports. More than 100 charges have been filed, including six felony counts of aggravated cruelty to animals, 76 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty, and 57 related charges. "This was a lengthy, detailed investigation that involved reviewing a lot of evidence at multiple locations," says Cpl. Michael Spada, a state police animal cruelty officer.

State police say the investigation was launched in August last year after a complaint from PETA. The workers were employed by Plainville Farms, a major turkey producer that describes its birds as "humanely raised," per the Daily Record. The workers, whose job was to catch and crate turkeys, were caught on video by an undercover PETA investigator who worked on a farm crew for around three weeks, the AP reports. Plainville CEO Matt Goodson says the company has "zero tolerance for anything like the alleged actions of these former employees."

Goodson says the workers were fired and the company has taken steps to prevent a recurrence, including using body cameras during the catching process. "We believe that it’s important for incidents like this to come to light in order to challenge our industry to do better," Goodson says. In a press release, PETA Vice President of Evidence Analysis Daniel Paden said, "Nothing can take back the suffering that all these helpless and gentle turkeys endured at Plainville Farms, but these charges show other meat companies that cruelty has consequences." (More turkeys stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.