PETA Wants Eight Belles' Death Investigated

by Gabe Bullard on June 5, 2008

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA, is asking the Jefferson County Commonwealth’s Attorney to investigate the injuries suffered by filly Eight Belles in last month’s Kentucky Derby.

The horse had to be euthanized on the track, where she collapsed from two broken ankles just after finishing second the in the Derby.

PETA general counsel Jeff Kerr says he will continue filing requests until an investigation is launched.

“I would consider the case closed only after a thorough investigation by appropriate law enforcement authorities and with the public disclosure of exactly what they did, how they did it and the information they gained in that investigation,” says Kerr.

But Commonwealth’s Attorney spokesperson Steve Tedder says his office can’t help PETA with their request.

“They requested us to investigate and we’re not an investigative agency,” he says.

Tedder says an investigation would have conducted by a law enforcement or regulatory agency.   His office could act only if there’s evidence that a crime has been committed.

PETA wants an investigation into why Eight Belles was given an anti-inflammatory drug before the race and whether she was fit to run. Racing officials say the drug was administered in compliance with the rules.

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