Visitor:
Practical Issues > Things To Do > Activism
SHARK Challenges New Jersey Rodeo and NJ SPCA Over Death of Horse
September 3, 2013
 
On June 29, 2013, a horse began to die 25 seconds after being electro-shocked at the Cowtown Rodeo in Pilesgrove, NJ. SHARK released a video of this tragedy which went viral and caused outrage around the world.

 
Cowtown claimed Duke wasn't shocked, even though Cowtown owner Grant Harris admitted to TMZ that the device shown on the video did appear to be a Hot Shot electric prod. In response, SHARK released a detailed video, going frame by frame, showing a Hot Shot electric prod being pulled back from the horse's body as the gate was being opened.
 
That video, entitled "Exposed: Horse Killed at Cowtown Rodeo was Electro-Shocked" can be seen HERE.  

You can see the Hot Shot electric prod in this frame from the video. It had just been pulled back from Duke's body.
 
An electric prod has one purpose and one purpose only; to deliver thousands of volts of electricity into the body of an animal. The video stands as uncontested evidence that the electric prod was present and being pulled away from the horse's body. To say otherwise makes a mockery of the tragic and completely avoidable death Duke suffered.
 
SHARK had presented the evidence, including individual frames of the video showing the electric prod, to the New Jersey SPCA, but the SPCA has refused to take action and has closed the investigation.
 
The video shows what happened. You see the electric prod. It's pulling away from the horse. Then Duke falls 25 seconds later. We are outraged that this cruelty is going to be unpunished. Therefore, we are challenging both the NJ SPCA and Grant Harris to a public viewing of the evidence.
 
SHARK wants both the NJ SPCA and Cowtown to stand in the bright light of day and defend their positions. Therefore, a copy of this has been sent to both organizations and we will set up a public meeting to view the video with them. Press will be invited to that event.
 
Evidence of previous electro-shocking of horses can be seen on the following videos:
 
 
The SPCA’s finding is being called “outrageous” by Stuart Chaifetz of the Illinois-based Showing Animals Respect and Kindness, or SHARK. Chaifetz took the video that SHARK alleges shows 9-year-old Duke dying about 30 seconds after being zapped with the device.
 
Chaifetz said a frame-by-frame look at the video clearly shows an electric prod being pulled “right back from the horse” as it is leaving its chute.
 
“The only logical conclusion was that the horse was shocked,” Chaifetz said. 

Follow-up on viral video of illegal police stop:
Group releases more evidence of police corruption 

On August 12, 2013, SHARK uploaded a YouTube video exposing an illegal traffic stop of SHARK President Steve Hindi by sheriff's deputies in Malheur County, Oregon. Using footage from the deputies own dashboard and body cameras, SHARK exposed that the deputies not only had no legal reason to stop Hindi, but they feared they were going to be sued for their illegal activity. 
 
SHARK's video went viral, receiving more than 665,000 views on LiveLeak and YouTube. You can watch that video HERE
 
This issue became a major news story. According to news sources, the sheriff of Malheur County was forced to ask the FBI to investigate. The FBI, however, has not contacted Mr. Hindi. 
 
In order to make sure the FBI has all the evidence, SHARK is publicly releasing new evidence of illegal acts and wrongdoing committed by the Malheur County Sheriff's Department. 
 
• The first of the new evidence deals with extreme abuse of power by a Malheur County sheriff's deputy named Robert Wroten, who is also a member of the Jordan Valley Rodeo Board. On the first day of 2013 Big Loop Rodeo, Wroten (who did not identify himself as a deputy) confronted and interrogated a SHARK investigator, demanded to see his personal identification, and wrote down all that private information. The next day, Wroten, along with Sergeant Richard Harriman, again confronted the investigator. 
 
During the second encounter, Wroten revealed that he had run the investigator's information, which was absolutely illegal. Wroten bullied to obtain personal information. He then used his position as a police officer to illegally run that information to benefit the rodeo. That is corruption and an absolute abuse of authority.
 
You can watch Wroten, in his own words, admit that he ran the investigator's ID in this video.
 
•The second major new evidence SHARK is releasing is that the Malheur County Sheriff's Department shared private information from the illegal traffic stop with rodeo people. 
 
On May 21, 2013, a rodeo supporter and photographer named Mary Williams Hyde posted the following on her Facebook page.
 
"The google research i did beforehand helped ME recognize Steve Hindi the SHARK guy when he showed up at Jordan Valley." 
 
 "He was sure mad when he got thrown out. Wasn't actually sure it was him though, because he refused to give his name. But they got the id l when highway patrol stopped him later. rental car was insured by SHARK."
 
On August 15, she posted the following:
 
 
"I know all about what happened to him [Hindi] as I was the one who ID'd him in the first place at JV."
 
Ms. Hyde's words are damning for two reasons: First, she states that she identified Hindi by name and face, second, that she knew that Hindi had a rental car and that it was insured by SHARK.

Mary Williams Hyde. She identified Steve Hindi to the rodeo people and sheriff's deputies, and then she was given private and personal information taken from an illegal traffic stop.
 
The excuse from everyone from the deputies to Sheriff Wolfe himself has been that they stopped me because they didn't know who I was. Ms. Hyde, however, admitted that she told them exactly who I was. Even so, that pales to her shocking revelation about knowing who insured my vehicle. The only way she could have known that is if that information worked its way from the sheriff's department through the rodeo board, and then to her. The sheriff's department shared private information obtained from an illegal traffic stop. One can only guess how many rodeo people now have that formerly private information.
 
Watch the video explaining this HERE.
 
SHARK has also released a video that shows how one deputy, later revealed to be Brian Beck, appears to have deliberately removed his name tag before talking to Hindi at the traffic stop, then retrieving it from the ground afterward. Beck refused to identify himself during the traffic stop. That video can be found HERE.  
 
 
The evidence shows that members of the Malheur County Sheriff's Department, including command level officers, committed numerous illegal acts. Since the FBI has not come to us, which they should have, we are presenting this publicly so that this issue does not get buried and ignored. Police are given enormous power over the public. When they violate their oath, they must be punished.
 
It is important to note the incestuous relationship that exists between the Jordan Valley Rodeo Board, which runs the Big Loop Rodeo, and the Malheur County Sheriff's Department, which uses the rodeo as a fundraiser for itself. In 2012, SHARK exposed cruel horse tripping at the Big Loop Rodeo. That video was so powerful that it lead to the law being changed in Oregon to ban the deliberate tripping of horses. In retaliation for that, at the 2013 Big Loop Rodeo, the Sheriff's department acted as private security for the rodeo and took severe action to intimidate and remove anyone associated with SHARK.
TV Coverage of Illinois Barnyard "Scramble"
 
SHARK has released a video showing horrendous acts of animal cruelty committed at a "barnyard scramble" in Martinsville, Illinois, where dozens of young animals were chased, kicked, dropped and violently handled by hordes of children and event staff.
 
This video exposes a very dark side of Illinois. When you see young children trying to kick ducklings and dropping rabbits to the ground, you realize the utter disregard for life that is being taught.
 
Watch the video HERE
 
Watch the TV coverage:

WAND NBC 17



WTWO NBC 2



 
The locals were so angry that we exposed their abuse that they tried to harass us by calling our phone numbers all day and night, but all that did was make us even more determined to fight their animal abuse. 
 
Even more ironic, these same people complained to YouTube that the video of what happened at the scramble was so violent and disturbing that it needed to be age-restricted, and they tried everything they could to get the video taken down, but they failed. So it's okay for children to beat and kick small animals during a frenzied scramble, but children shouldn't be allowed to view it.  That says everything about how depraved the scramble was.

SHARK Confronts Bensalem Township Mayor and Council on Corruption and Cruelty 

On Monday, August 26th, SHARK investigator Stuart Chaifetz spoke before the Bensalem Town Council regarding the horrendous pigeon shoots held at the Philadelphia Gun Club.

After speaking personally about the bloodshed he witnessed, Chaifetz confronted the Council and Mayor Joseph DiGirolamo about why the PGC has been able to get away with committing numerous illegal acts, and raised the concern that we uncovered that the Mayor had received $4,000 in total from two brothers who were pigeon shooters, and who we had been told belong to the PGC.

 

Bensalem Mayor Joseph DiGirolamo listening as SHARK exposed $4,000 in donations
he received from local pigeon shooters.
 
Here is the letter we presented to the Council. We will have more on this in an upcoming update.
 
To the Mayor and Town Council of Bensalem,
 
SHowing Animals Respect and Kindness (SHARK) has been fighting against horrendous live pigeon shoots at the Philadelphia Gun Club (PGC) in your town, and we have been stunned by how many illegal acts the PGC has gotten away with. PGC members have hit us with shotgun pellets. They threaten our activists by purposely driving their vehicles dangerously close to them, and cover their license plates as they enter and leave PGC property. Though we have reached out numerous times to Bensalem authorities and Mayor DiGirolamo himself, nothing has ever been done.”
 
Watch a video showing violations committed by the PGC HERE
 
In 2011, the PGC constructed a massive wall on their property that borders the Delaware River. This wall consisted of more than a dozen telephone pole sized beams sunk into the ground with a cloth tarp over it. We estimate the wall was at least 30 feet high. The wall was built so poorly that by early December of 2011 the wall started to fall apart, and a large section of it fully collapsed by the end of the month.
 
Watch a video showing the wall HERE
 
You can’t put a shed on your property without jumping through a giant array of bureaucracy. How then was the PGC able to build this unsafe monstrosity?
 
Something has been clearly going on in Bensalem. SHARK believes that we have found part of the answer of why the PGC has received special protection.
 
John and David Rybas have made donations to the Pennsylvania Flyers Victory Fund. This fund is specifically and solely set up to defend and lobby on behalf of live pigeon shoots and shooters. In 2011, not long after the PGC wall went up, John Rybas donated $1,000 to the Committee to Elect Joseph DiGirolamo. In 2012, he donated another $1,000. In 2013, in a contribution listed to both Rybas brothers, they gave $2,000 to DiGirolamo’s campaign account, for a total of $4,000 over three years. I must note that these are only the donations from pigeon shooters that we have found. We suspect that there are more.
 
There are no such things as coincidences when it comes to campaign donations. And you don’t start dropping thousand dollar checks every year unless you are getting something in return. In light of these significant donations to his campaign war chest, SHARK is asking Mayor DiGirolamo why he has allowed the PGC to remain untouched as they violated the law. 
 
Kindest Regards,  
Steve Hindi and Your SHARK Team

 
"Kindness and compassion towards all living beings is a mark of a civilized society.  Racism, economic deprival, dog fighting and cock fighting, bullfighting and rodeos are all cut from the same fabric: violence. Only when we have become nonviolent towards all life will we have learned to live well ourselves." - Cesar Chavez, civil rights and labor leader, founder of the United Farm Workers



Fair Use Notice and Disclaimer
Send questions or comments about this web site to Ann Berlin, annxtberlin@gmail.com