Officials at the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals are pleading with authorities in Arizona to confiscate two giraffes that used belong to Michael Jackson but are now held at a wildlife preserve near Page.
Lisa Wathne, the organization's "captive exotic-animal specialist" sent a letter to Page Police Chief Charlie Dennis urging him to save the two animals from conditions at Voices of the Wild Foundation/Banjoko Wildlife Preserve, which PETA feels resulted in the deaths of two other giraffes.
"The request comes after news that two other giraffes acquired from Jackson's estate have died, possibly from improper feeding and/or exposure to cold temperatures," Wathne tells WENN.com. "PETA wants the remaining animals to be relocated to a facility that can better provide them with necessary care and has offered its resources to help make that happen."
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
"PETA recently learned that two of the giraffes have died and that the possible cause of death of at least one of the animals was improper feeding and/or exposure to cold temperatures. If this is true, the Hancocks [owners of the preserve] appear to be in violation of state cruelty-to-animals law, and the remaining two giraffes must be removed as soon as possible," Wathne says in her letter to authorities.
"We urge you to thoroughly investigate this situation and, if applicable, pursue charges against the Hancocks for the deaths of two giraffes."
Calls to the preserve and to the Page Police Department were not returned this afternoon, but Freddie Hancock, one of the preserve's owners, told Inside Edition back in 2008 that Michael Jackson would approve of the accommodations for the animals.
"I think he would be impressed to see where the animals are," she says.