Updated: Thursday, 25 Jun 2009, 10:11 PM CDT
Published : Thursday, 25 Jun 2009, 6:49 PM CDT
BELLEVUE - A dairy farmer says someone has been shooting at his cows from the highway. David VanRite owns the farm at State Highway 172 and County Highway GV in Bellevue. In the last couple of weeks, he says he's noticed markings on his cows which he believes are consistent with a pellet gun, or possibly even a rifle.
If you've driven Highway 172 in Brown County, you've probably seen David VanRite's dairy farm. It's easy to spot the cows from the road, and someone appears to be using that vantage point, to hurt the cows.
"Somebody's coming by late at night, shooting them," said VanRite. "I think it's coming off the on ramp of GV and 172."
VanRite says about 15 of his cows have been wounded, one so badly, it had to be put down.
"It makes ya mad, but I guess that's life. There's good people and there's bad people," said VanRite.
VanRite says he first noticed wounds on the cows, about the size of a nickel. He says the wounds became infected, and developed lumps. He believes someone is using a pellet gun or a .22 rifle to shoot his livestock.
VanRite says his cows have been wounded a couple of different times during the past month. He's hoping someone knows something and contacts the police.
"Obviously we are concerned about it," said Captain David Konrath of the Brown County Sheriff's Department. "Somebody's out there creating criminal damage, wounding an animal."
Not only is someone wounding the animals, but it's costing VanRite money. He estimates the cow that he had to put down was worth about $2,000, and the wounded cows require extra care.
"You got vet bills, you got disposal fees. You have more time and labor on them, loss of milk production," said VanRite.
But what may be even more worrisome, is the potential those who abuse animals have to become more violent.
"I think he needs jail time. And he's not gonna stop here, he's gonna move on to somebody else, or possibly humans," said VanRite.
If you have any information about what Van Rite says is
happening to his cows, the Brown County Sheriff's Department asks
you to call its tip line at 920-448-7686.