Source: WTVF TV, Nashville
Teens Accused of Shooting, Killing Cows
Posted: 1/25/2006 5:12:30 PM
Two Hickman County teens are facing charges for shooting 24 cows, 11 of them unborn, and the cattle owner is out thousands of dollars.
They just wanted to see what shooting cattle was like. That's basically all you can say," said Hickman County Sheriff Randal Ward.
Ward said the explanation won't justify what they did, but that is the only explanation theyve given.
The cattle were killed on the Bon Aqua farm of Randall Tidwell. Police say two juvenile boys, 14 and 16 years-old went hunting then trespassed onto the farmer's property. Tidwell found some of his cattle dead while checking his pasture the following day.
"Eleven of the cows were all pregnant and were expecting calves, which was part of the 24 that were dead, and two of them were calves," said Ward.
All of the animals were killed by gunshots. Some were shot twice or three times in the side.
"They died a slow death you could say, within a 24-hour period or longer. So after the ones that he initially found several more died later on from the gunshot wounds," Ward explained.
The owner estimates his loss at $25,000 to $30,000. That doesn't include the value of calves the 11 cows were expected to produce during the next eight years.
Insurance is not going to be able to cover this. This is a total loss to him. He's lost some cattle plus future cattle that he would have from calves," said Ward.
This incident also potentially poses a bigger concern for the county sheriff.
"Were seeing a great amount of violence among juveniles using weapons, guns, knives or anything they have of real destruction," said Ward.
The sheriff said in this case, a 300 magnum and a 22-caliber rifle were used. Both guns belonged to family members.
It was a family member that notified the sheriff of who was responsible for the cattle shootings. Both juveniles are from Hickman County. The 14 year-old is currently in DCS custody, after escaping twice from state officials after his arrest.
He's also a great-nephew of Mr. Tidwell, but the two are said to have had no relationship.
Each is cited for criminal trespassing and the intentional killing of an animal. They both face a hearing date next month.
Reports Say Tennessee Teens Gunned Down 13 Cows, Some Animals Died Slowly
Please respond and forward as appropriate.
Raising and killing animals for food is, by nature, a bloody business. Cattle who are raised for their flesh may spend some of their lives grazing, but they are still subjected to abuses that would warrant felony cruelty-to-animals charges if they were dogs or cats.
This January, business on a Bon Aqua, Tennessee, farm apparently got bloody earlier than expected. Two unnamed Hickman County boys, ages 14 and 16, reportedly went hunting with a .300 magnum and a .22-caliber rifle and apparently trespassed onto the farm. They are accused of then opening fire on two calves and 11 pregnant cows, allegedly killing them all and the pregnant cows unborn calves. Some of the animals were evidently shot multiple times and suffered for at least 24 hours before dying.
Ronald Davis, the lead prosecutor for Tennessee's surrounding 21st district, will oversee the prosecution of these defendants on the felony charges that they now face. Remind him of the frightening frequency with which cruelty to animals shows up in the juvenile behavioral records of school shooters and serial killers. Kindly request thatif the accused are convictedDavis' office work with the court to ensure that both are appropriately detained or incarcerated for the maximum period allowed by law, ordered to undergo psychiatric evaluations and subsequent counseling, and barred from owning or possessing any animal in Tennessee in the future, as is allowed by state law.
Please be respectful when writing.
The Honorable Ronald L. Davis
District Attorney General, 21st District
P.O. Box 937
Franklin, TN 37065-0937