Extra security at fair after rabbits found dead

Preble County Fair (WDTN photo/Jake Ryle)

EATON, Ohio (WDTN) – Extra security is on hand at the Preble County Fair in response to reports of tampering with animals.

Preble County Sheriff Mike Simpson tells 2 NEWS his office is investigating after learning that nine rabbits died during a 14 hour period on Thursday.

Sheriff Simpson wants to stress that no other animals were abused or killed.

2 NEWS reporter Jake Ryle spoke with the fair manager on Friday morning.

James Mays said, “[I was] very surprised. You know, why would something like that happen? Or if it was an individual, who did this and why? So we’ve pretty much locked down the rabbit barns and are calming other people, because [the story] got pretty widespread.”

Several animal owners and parents of members of the 4-H club spent the night at the barns to keep an eye on their animals.

Rob Taulbee was one of those parents. He says he stayed up all night watching over one of the barns. Taulbee says what happened wasn’t necessary.

“It was a heinous act. When you harm an animal, there’s no need for it. It’s uncalled for,” he said.

Taulbee told us that many 4-H participants and parents worried that the water at the fair had been bleached; however, he says the City of Eaton had a water main break which caused bleach to be in the water.

He says that the bleached water had nothing to do with the death of the rabbits.

Anyone who has information is asked to call the Preble County Sheriff’s Office at (937)-456-6262.

The fair ends Saturday, August 2.

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