Teen Suspects Attack Geese, Vandalize School Bus

From The Charlotte Observer By Cameron Steele, April 16, 2013

Charles Battaglia found the Canada geese on the Kennedy Charter School grounds Monday, bloodied and suffering from shattered bones.

In the parking lot nearby, all of the windows of a school bus were smashed.

Vandals also had broken several windows on the building itself, said Battaglia, the maintenance director for the school on Sharon Road West in south Charlotte.

Surveillance video shows five teenagers damaged the property and used rocks and a board to attack the geese, which nest every spring on the school grounds, around 6 p.m. on Sunday.

“The individuals came on board and starting smashing the bus up and beating up on the geese, throwing rocks at them until they were bleeding,” Battaglia said.

Carolina Waterfowl Rescue workers Tuesday took two geese to Monroe Animal Hospital for X-rays and treatment for broken bones. Veterinarians put a splint on the crushed leg of one of the injured geese, rescue workers said, while the other received treatment for a broken wing.

A third goose was at the vet’s office for mild cuts to its face, said Jennifer Gordon, director of Carolina Waterfowl Rescue. A fourth is missing and suspected dead.

In the meantime, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police were reviewing surveillance video of the incident. Police said they had not yet charged any of the teenagers, but school officials said three of the five suspects have been identified as students from another school.

Federal law provides for penalties of up to $10,000 for harming Canada geese, which are protected under the Federal Migratory Bird Act.

A police report estimates the damage will cost more than $1,000. But Battaglia said Sunday’s destruction is the latest of several vandalism incidents that have happened over the past three weeks.

He estimated the school will have to pay about $10,000 to repair buses that have had windows smashed on at least two other occasions.

The migratory birds spend several months out of each year on the campus, nesting and raising their young, he said.

“It is just cruel and terrible what the juveniles were doing to them,” Battaglia said.



Published in: on April 17, 2013 at 11:50 am  Leave a Comment  

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