In the early hours of Friday 15th August three masked men broke into the animal rescue centre in Norfolk, England where Toby Chaplin was staying as a night watchman. They bound the 23 year old with parcel tape and beat him while ransacking the caravan Mr Chaplin was sleeping in as well as the main building. The men eventually made off with a laptop, stereo, mobile phone, a vacuum cleaner, bicycle lights, medical syringes and some petty cash.
Mr Chaplin has since spoken to a local paper, Eastern Daily Press, about his ordeal and how the men pointed a sawn-off, double-barrel shot gun at him and also threatened to blow his knee off with a hand gun.
Although no animals were harmed, the charity founder Jo Eglen has stated that Mr Chaplin has suffered a swollen face and a black eye and was more concerned about the animals’ safety than his own. Rather understandably he also no longer wishes to stay at Little Hen Rescue as night watchman. This was not the first time the centre has been targeted and it was hoped that Mr Chaplin’s presence would have been a deterrent.
“It feels like the final straw. I have had it”, said Jo Eglen. “I can’t protect my animals or protect someone there who I thought would be OK. He is only a lad and I feel so guilty that he was there and they did this to him.”
Little Hen Rescue has rehomed thousands of ex-battery hens since it was founded in 2008. Every commercial hen, whether they’re a part of the factory farming industry or a free range operation is expected to lay eggs until the age of 18 months, at which point they are then sent to slaughter to be made into pies and pet food. What Little Hen Rescue does is give these hens a chance of a life of retirement as pets instead.
Any donations towards Little Hen Rescue in light of this terrible event are encouraged whether the decision is made for them to remain open or if it is otherwise deemed too dangerous to continue. The animals on the site include rescued pigs, goats, sheep, turkeys and ducks as well as the many special needs hens on site and any money raised will go towards keeping these animals safe in the meantime and will be greatly appreciated.
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