Teens charged with brutally beating turtle to death

ROYALTON, N.Y. (WIVB) — Following investigations into the brutal beating of a turtle caught on camera, four teens are facing serious charges.

The Niagara County SPCA in conjunction with the Erie County SPCA and the Department of Environmental Conservation elected to charge Mitchell MacPeek, 19, Ryan Rosenberg, Jacob McKenna, 18, and a 17-year-old male, each face misdemeanor charges.

Friday, police identified the final person caught on camera with a baseball bat beating the turtle as Nicholas Paolucci, 18, from Akron. Paolucci admitted using the bat repeatedly to beat the snapping turtle.

Officials say each of the four people who have been caught so far have both admitted guilt and expressed remorse.

“I am glad that those involved have taken responsibility for their actions and will face charges for their crimes,” Amy Lewis, the executive director of the Niagara County SPCA, said. “This case has brought to light the need for much stiffer penalties for those involved in aggravated cruelty regardless of whether the animal is a companion animal, a working animal or wild.”

Lewis said she intends to work with government to change laws to protect innocent wildlife.

Anybody with additional information on the case or the final wanted person is asked to call (716) 731-4368 at extension 302.

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