An animal sanctuary in Orange County is offering a hefty reward for information leading to the person who shot and killed an emu last week.
A staff member at Rikki's Refuge found Mary the emu with a fatal gunshot wound to the leg around 9 a.m. last Tuesday. The 12-year-old bird came to the reserve in May 2006.
“We are all very devastated,” Rikki’s Refuge wrote in a statement. “Whether this was an accident and they didn’t mean hit Mary, or it was deliberate, it’s the reason it’s too dangerous to have people running in our woods discharging firearms for any reason what so ever.”
The Orange County Sheriff's Office says there is an active and ongoing investigation.
“Currently we're following up on a number of leads, we're talking to neighbors, and people who own adjoining land and anybody else that we can think of at this point that may have information on this case,” said Major Michael LaCasse with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
The reward set up through a memorial fund for Mary currently sits at $5,000.
If you have any information on the case, call the Orange County Sheriff's Office at 540-672-1200. You can also send an email to county’s chief animal control officer by clicking here.
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