No Animal Cruelty Charges Stemming From Video Of Goat Hit Over Head With Can

FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM) -- The Fayetteville Police Department said Monday (Sept. 26) a group of juveniles that appears in a cell phone video shared on Facebook will not face animal cruelty charges after one of the boys appears to break open a beverage can by hitting it over a goat's head.

The video was posted on Sept. 22 on Facebook by Mollie Catherine Mullins and has since been shared nearly 825 times. It is unclear when the original video of the incident was taken, but Fayetteville police said they were made aware of it Sept. 15.

The video shows a group of boys standing around a goat. One of the boys is holding the goat by its neck while another boy hits the goat over the head with a can to break it open. The goat quickly runs away when it is let go.

Sgt. Craig Stout with Fayetteville police said a school resource officer took down a report about the incident, but the facts of the case did not meet the threshold of animal cruelty. Police contacted the goat's owner and said they found the animal was unharmed, according to Stout. Police have turned over their report to the juvenile prosecutor to determine if the teens should face misdemeanor animal cruelty or any underage drinking charges (CORRECTION: a previous version of this story stated the report was submitted to the Fayetteville city prosecutor).

Under the Arkansas Rules of Criminal Procedure, an officer cannot make an arrest for these types of misdemeanor crimes without a warrant, unless the crime happened in the officer’s presence. According to a release, even if the event was on video, a warrant-less arrest cannot be made.

The goat, which has since been named Grace, is now at a baby goat sanctuary in New Jersey called Goats of Anarchy after someone contacted the sanctuary's founder, Leanne Lauricella, with the video.

Lauricella said she decided to share the video on the sanctuary's Facebook page because it was not the first time she has heard of a goat being abused at a college or high school party. She said she has heard of several such incidents.

“As soon as I did within an hour or two I just had an outpouring of emails and messages from people in that community offering assistance in offering names,” said Lauricella.

Lauricella said she was eventually able to get in contact with the goat's owner after sharing the video and they made a deal to get the animal to her. She said the owner had rented the goat to the group of boys in the video for $10.

Over the weekend, Lauricella said a volunteer flew to Arkansas to pick up the goat and then drove it to the sanctuary in New Jersey.

“When I have that baby in my arms late tonight you know it`s going to be a whole different story because now she`s my baby and having to watch what she went through is going to be very personal for me and it`s disgusting no matter whose animal it is,” she said.

Police said they could not comment on the details of the case because it involves juveniles.


  • kathyasaunders

    I guarantee if kids brought a goat at a party, this was not the only horrific incident that happened — they brought it there for a reason. It was brought for jokes and pranks and dares and all other evil intentions. No animal should be brought to a house party. If these kids can do this to an animal, they need serious psychological help. Next, they’ll think they can do what they want to any person without repercussions. It’ll be too late when an even more evil act is committed and people reflect, “well, there were no signs x would do such a thing…” The signs are there now. Punish these kids.

  • Dawn Owar (@DawnOwar)

    i’m following Goatsofanarchy on Instagram and they say the goat is in really bad condition. Its emaciated because its been starved and she has scratches on her eyes. How they don’t think this is a case of animal cruelty is really difficult for me to understand. I think the police need to revisit this case and talk to the vet that is treating this goat. Its hard to imagine anyone would think it’s OK to treat a living thing like that.

  • Jade (@Lolagirl0205)

    Eventually these kids who did this will go on to abuse other animals and people. IF you can watch an innocent animal squirm and cry in pain and think its funny.. you have some major mental issues… I hope the parents of these horrible kids reads this and seeks help for the disgraceful children they have raised. These boys will only spread hate if they aren’t taught a lesson by paying for their poor judgement! WAKE UP PARENTS! WE DON”T WANT YOUR MONSTER CHILD RUINING THE WORLD!

  • Jenny Jacks Shreve

    This is an absolutely horrific crime. After reading what Dawn says, I DO believe that the act DOES indeed meet the felony provision to the Arkansas Animal Cruelty Act. If you read the exact wording, you’ll see what I mean. I believe that the intention (1) was there, as is trying to commit suffering to a sentient being (2). Let me at ’em……

      • Jenny Jacks Shreve

        Yes, Pete, you are correct. Misdemeanor if it’s to “any animal;” felony provision only for “cat, dog or horse, if it involves torture.” I stand corrected. This really stinks. So, the goat situation is just a misdemeanor, & that would only be IF the authorities pressed charges. I can guarantee you that the kids involved in this must be from some affluent family.

  • Cindy Williams

    i believe the S.P.C.A. should be called concerning this. They’re a lot more qualified to judge if an animal has been abused than the police. hitting any animal with a full can IS abuse. little rotten idiots.

    • Jenny Jacks Shreve

      I know that the Humane Society of the Ozarks has been involved in this case. Please call them at 444-PETS to express your concerns & speak w/ Sally Baker Williams to find out if there are any future punishments to these “young men” coming.

  • Stacey Schettler

    this would be the perfect opportunity to make an example of these guys. How often do you have video proof? They were dumb enough to video and brag about it and admit it on social media but no charges?? It was underhanded to the police in Fayetteville but no charges? These are the reasons I will worry when my daughter leaves for college. This is a gateway behavior that WILL lead to more of the same….then worse. PLEASE do not drop this case. This needs to haunt them in ways they couldn’t imagine. Their names should come up every time they are googled by a girlfriend’s father, an employer and a university. This trend needs to end. Now.

    • Jenny Jacks Shreve

      Stacey, I beg you to PLEASE contact both the Fayetteville Police Department (Officer Craig Stout) & the Fayetteville City Prosecutor (Clinton K. Jones), either by calling, emailing or sending a letter. If ALL of us will do this, we can keep this case alive. As of present, no one has decided to press charges. We need to demand that they do so.

  • Jamie Nesi

    Saw the video, so has everyone in American. The boys face are everywhere and everyone is disgusted. They are refusing to take responsibility . They have no remorse . Hurting a innocent animal is abuse. The animal is now very very sick. The new owner is caring for her but the old owners were allowing her to starve and not get her medical attention. The goat would have died if she was not rescued. My concern is how many other animals does this owner have? What condition are they in? are they sick? starving to death? Authorities need to be sent there to check on these animals. Goats of Anarchy and all her followers will fight this till the owner and the juvenile delinquents are held accountable. They are going to have a very hard getting in to college and finding a job after this if they don’t turn themselves in and face consequences. Very very sad.

    • Jenny Jacks Shreve

      Jamie, I urge you to please contact the Fayettevile City Animal Control/Shelter, and speak with either Tony Rankin (Animal Services Program Manager) or Justine Lentz (Animal Services Superintendent). Their phone number is 479-444-3456. They would be the ones to investigate this case, much in the way that a Detective investigates crimes against people & property.

  • Jenny Jacks Shreve

    Please also write a Letter to the Editor of the Arkansas-Democrat Gazette, if you live in the State of Arkansas. Make your voice heard, as this goat cannot speak for itself what horrible things happened to it!

  • fiercefriends

    you really needed to investigate more. what happened to investigative journalism? they apparently held this baby down, force fed it cigarettes and beer until it convulsed. these boys will continue to harm animals and eventually people since they have not had to bear any responsibility for their actions. it is disgusting.

  • William H Wilson

    no charges?? juveniles posting video of party including alcohol usage and no charges? adult who furnished alcohol should at least be charged.. with one count for each juvenile drinking at the party.

  • Bj Frotten

    The Police Department should be ashamed! Those boys should be ashamed. Their parents should be ashamed! If they can do this to a harmless animal, what’s to say it will be a human next! What is happening to today’s society!

  • Anna Malinowski

    These lowlife psychopathic monsters should be punished severely for their vile abuse of this sweet little baby. As a part of punishement they should be castrated so they will not be able to breed and burden the Earth with more garbage like them.

  • Samuel Crews

    What isn’t being talked about is what else was done to the goat. “Several students have reported that the next day at school, several of the boys bragged about how they dragged her with a rope, held her down and forced her to drink beer and eat cigarettes until she started convulsing.” If true, this would raise it to yet another level of abuse. I wonder why this isn’t being mentioned in the news reports???

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