Woman claims PETA stole her dog

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 25, 2005

EURE – As a disabled individual, Kristen Groves relies of the comfort of companionship.

However, according to the Gates County native, her most trusted companion has been stolen, perhaps by a group in which she placed faith in for the humane care of animals.

Groves, who suffers from a brain disorder, claims PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) stole her dog in early March of this year. The missing pet is a German Shepherd and Boxer mix. The dog goes by the name of &uot;Aries.&uot;

To complicate the issue, Groves claims that while PETA denies taking her pet, she said a photo of &uot;Aries&uot; was on PETA’s website.

&uot;There’s a link on their website showing dogs and cats, ones they’ve supposedly rescued from abuse and have adopted out,&uot; Groves said. &uot;I saw a picture of ‘Aries’ on their website.&uot;

All Groves said she wanted was for &uot;Aries&uot; to return home.

&uot;I’m hoping that by getting this story out to the newspapers and the TV stations, whoever did adopt my ‘Aries’ will hear my plea for his safe return,&uot; Groves stressed.

She continued, &uot;This is like my young’un, my baby and I want him back. He took care of me because of my disability and they (PETA) came down here and took him from me. They’ve got a picture of my dog on their website. Isn’t that enough proof to say they took him?&uot;

Gates County Sheriff Ed Webb verified her report, saying he had been working with Groves on the alleged incident. Webb also reported one other possible case in Gates County involving a stolen animal.

According to Groves, the incident occurred March 9. She had contacted PETA at that time concerning a dog and a cat she wanted picked-up and found a good home.

&uot;They promised me those pets could be adopted,&uot; she said. &uot;They assured me they were a no-kill program.&uot;

Groves said PETA informed her they would be at her home at 1 p.m. on that date. She claims they failed to show-up, so, at approximately 8:30 p.m. that night, she went to her mother’s residence, located a short distance from her home.

&uot;I was at my mom’s house for 10-to-15 minutes, tops,&uot; she recalled. &uot;I had left ‘Aries’ outside while I was gone. When I returned home, he was gone and there were partially eaten dog biscuits in my front yard.&uot;

Groves said she look for &uot;Aries&uot; and then went inside. There she discovered a message from PETA on her answering machine.

&uot;They were right there in my front yard when they called because I could hear ‘Aries’ barking in the background,&uot; Groves said. &uot;They left a callback number, so I called them. I told them they had taken the wrong dog (the one she had informed PETA about was in the backyard; the cat was in the house). They told me they didn’t take any type of dog from my house. I asked them about the doggie biscuits. They said they didn’t use them.&uot;

Now frantic, Groves didn’t know where to turn or what to do.

&uot;I called them back about 30 minutes later and this time they admitted using doggie biscuits while parked in my yard, but they denied taking ‘Aries’,&uot; she said. &uot;I went as far as to call the PETA office in Norfolk (Va.) at 2 a.m. the next morning. Nobody knew anything.&uot;

On March 10, two PETA employees arrived at her house to pick-up the dog and cat. Groves alleged one was Adria Hinkle, the same PETA employee arrested last week in Ahoskie for animal cruelty and illegal disposal of dead animals.

&uot;It made me remember her when I saw her face all over the news because of what happened last week in Ahoskie,&uot; Groves concluded. &uot;Now I don’t know what to believe. Was ‘Aries’ really and truly adopted or did they kill him too?&uot;