WEST DES MOINES, Iowa (WHO) – Five out-of-state animal rights activists were arrested Wednesday in Iowa after dead piglets were buried in the yard of the CEO of Iowa Select Farms.
Criminal complaints show the incident happened just before 3:00 p.m. at the home of CEO Jeff Hansen.
According to animal rights group Direct Action Everywhere, five of its members dug graves on Hansen’s property for the piglets, which they say were killed at an Iowa Select Farms facility. The group livestreamed the incident on its Facebook page.
The group said it was protesting the company’s use of “ventilation shutdown” practices to euthanize pigs at its facilities. The process involves shutting off ventilation to the building, raising the building’s temperature and injecting steam into the building.
West Des Moines police took the protesters into custody and they were booked into the Polk County Jail.
Curtis Vollmar, 33; Kyana Jones, 27; Brianna Martelozzo, 29; Anastasia Rogers, 27, and James Crom, 28, were charged with trespassing. Fourth-degree criminal mischief charges were also filed against Jones, Martelozzo and Crom.
As of noon Thursday, all except Vollmar had bonded out of jail.