No prosecution over pig slaying
A Ministry of Primary Industries investigation into the killing of a pig by Napier City Council staff has finished, with a decision made not to prosecute those involved.
It is understood the two staff in question, who had left the council, were sent a warning letter by MPI.
MPI acting animal welfare compliance manager Peter Hyde said the specific allegation put before the ministry was that the pig was not ‘‘rendered insensible before bleeding out’’.
An MPI animal welfare inspector had made thorough inquiries about the alleged incident.
‘‘The decision was taken that proceeding to prosecution was not appropriate in this case.
‘‘MPI was satisfied that the event was very unusual and unlikely to occur again.’’
In 2015 the piglet was caught running the streets of Taradale, taken to the council pound, and killed a few days later.
Watchdog! animal welfare group chairwoman Jessica Maxwell, who asked MPI to investigate, said the publicity was embarrassing for Napier Mayor Bill Dalton and council chief executive Wayne Jack.
Its findings disproved Dalton’s repeated assurances that animals were always well looked after at the pound, and Jack’s claims that concerns about the pound were unfounded.
An earlier MPI investigation found there were serious failings at the pound, but no evidence was found that animals had been mistreated.
She said the fact there would be no prosecutions was disappointing, but the outcome was ‘‘better than nothing’’.
Jack said the outcome was sensible.
‘‘Napier City Council has, and had, strict protocols in place around euthanising animals and, in this case, the protocols weren’t adhered to,’’ he said.
‘‘The matter was investigated internally and fully dealt with in 2015.
‘‘We are pleased MPI has put it to rest.’’
Stuff revealed the killing earlier this year after an Ombudsman ruled the council had to release details of what happened, after it refused to.