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Manlius Police Department Chief Jason Cassalia: [email protected]; New York Department of Environmental Conservation: [email protected]; Village of Manlius Prosecutor Joseph Greenman: [email protected]

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PETITION TARGETS: Manlius Police Department, New York Department of Environmental Conservation, Village of Manlius Prosecutors

UPDATE (12/14/2023): An 18 year old entered a guilty plea to charges of animal cruelty and will be sentenced on February 15, 2024, according to news. -Lady Freethinker Staff

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A mother swan was trapped, killed, and eaten — and her four babies stolen — from a village pond in New York over Memorial Day weekend, according to news reports.

Faye, a 16-year-old swan who had lived in the city of Manlius for more than a decade, was held down by teenagers who hopped a fence after midnight and then killed her at the pond, in front of her four cygnets, according to police.

Faye’s corpse then was devoured by friends and family members of the teens, who reportedly said they planned to raise two of the baby swans as “pets,” according to a Manlius police sergeant. Police retrieved those babies and the two other cygnets from a nearby store.

Swans are intelligent and loyal animals who mate for life.  Manny, Faye’s long-time beau, lost not only his partner — but he’s also going to lose his home. The village mayor has announced plans to remove Manny from the pond as the bereft swan “may become combative” due to the loss of Faye.

Meanwhile, Faye’s four babies won’t be healthy enough to return to the pond for at least six weeks, according to the biologist now caring for them.

Authorities have charged three teens — aged 16, 17, and 18 — with grand larceny and criminal mischief, both felonies, and with conspiracy and criminal trespass, both misdemeanors. 

When questioned, the teens reportedly said they were “hunting” and thought the swan was a duck. The teens reportedly  “didn’t know” what they had done was wrong but did not explain why they choose to intentionally kill the swan and steal her babies in the middle of the night, according to a police sergeant who added that the cruel killing “wasn’t because they were lacking in food.”

Regardless, a defenseless swan and her family’s lives forever have been changed, and this horrific act must be taken seriously. 

Sign our petition urging local and state authorities to thoroughly investigate this tragedy and hold accountable everyone who participated. We’re also urging prosecutors to pursue this case to the maximum extent possible, including a ban on owning or being around animals for those involved and any needed intervention services, including counseling or a psychological evaluation.