A New Jersey man was arrested and charged with animal cruelty for utterly senseless acts of sadism. Richard Baird of Linden, NJ was apparently so offended when squirrels got into his house that he spread peanut butter on the trunk of a tree in his back yard, and then killed the squirrels one by one with a BB gun when they came to eat the peanut butter. Then, as if that wasn't cruel enough, he hung the bodies of several of the victims on his back yard fence. When police responded to a neighbor's complaint of animal cruelty, they found six dead squirrels hanging on the fence, and several more victims' corpses on the ground nearby.
|Accused squirrel murderer Richard|
Baird of Linden, NJ
Of course, I'm sure that Mr. Baird is aware that if the squirrels were really bothering him or causing damage to his home, there are companies that will remove them humanely and seal any holes through which they were coming in. I'm sure he is also aware that the squirrels meant him no harm and were only seeking shelter as squirrels naturally do, and that taking violent, deadly vengeance on creatures that are totally oblivious of the reasons for your vengeance is not only pointless but sadistic and sick.
Mr. Baird faces a maximum of six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. This seems like a very small price to pay for the suffering and death that he has caused. I'm sure that many of those squirrels did not die instantly and must have suffered horrible pain and confusion after they were shot. I also have to wonder if any young children live in the neighborhood and if they witnessed this brutality.
I hope Mr. Baird gets the maximum sentence. It's the least that the criminal justice system can do to discourage murderous acts like this.