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Animal activist group responds to allegations that investigator 'encouraged' abuse at Fair Oaks Farm

Posted at 10:21 PM, Jun 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-18 22:21:34-04

FAIR OAKS — The animal welfare group, Animal Recovery Mission, responded to allegations that one of their employees 'encouraged' the abuse of animals at Fair Oaks Farms.

The Florida-based organization released a statement on Tuesday night that stated the Newton County Prosecutor's Office is "trying to discrete our [ARM's] work with unfounded and bogus claims."

ARM's statement in response to possible coercion of abuse reads:

The statement sent out by the Newton County’s Prosecutors Office that an ARM Investigator coerced or encouraged the abuse of innocent animals at Fair Oaks Farms, couldn’t be further from the truth. The Newton County Sheriff’s and Prosecutors Office has yet to reach out to Animal Recovery Mission’s main witness in this case for any additional statement. For prosecutors to release such an unfounded and bogus information that is part of an open and ongoing criminal case, is not only unprofessional, but irresponsible, as it could have a negative effect on this very important criminal case. It is apparent that this prosecutor is attempting to divert public attention away from Fair Oaks Farms and Mike McCloskey in order to create doubt on a professionally put together investigation into Newton County. Once again, the Animal Recovery Mission is reaching out to both the Sheriff’s and Prosecutors Office to give our first formal statements.

Earlier this month ARM released two investigations that captured Fair Oaks Farms employees beating and injuring cows. Since then, one of three wanted suspects in the Newton County Sheriff's Office investigation has been arrested, and two federal lawsuits have been filed against Fairlife Milk.

According to the Newton County Sheriff, Thomas VanVleet, the investigators will be working with the Newton County Prosecutors office in identifying the "witness to the alleged crime that failed to report this activity for some time."