- Ashlei Mason Burns Innocent Bat Alive
- Charge Ashlei Mason with animal cruelty
- Bat Allegedly Doused in Lighter Fluid and Set on Fire
GARDEN CITY - What would you do if a bat was flying around your house?
A Garden City woman captured a bat then doused the living creature in lighter fluid and set it on fire, according to the woman’s Facebook page.
Along with the post, pictures and video’s where attached then were shared with CBS 7.
"That video was just the same as watching a puppy being tortured," bat expert and founder of Bat World Sanctuary, Amanda Lollar said.
Lollar has dedicated nearly 30 years to research, observing and protecting bats. She said when she saw the video she was sickened, "and instead of saving it by tossing the little bat into the air and letting it fly free, she doused it in lighter fluid and set in on fire."
Though the woman behind the act hasn't been charged, petitions have started and now have just about 2000 signatures from people who believe she should face legal consequences.
"Our attorney said this basically constitutes towards torture under the penal code section 42.09-2," Lollar said.
Texas animal cruelty law states, in that section, “cruelty to livestock and non-livestock animals of the Texas Health and Safety Code Prohibits a person from intentionally, knowingly and recklessly cruelly treating an animal.”
Section 63.101, Protection of Bats, states “no person may hunt a bat or sell, offer for sale, purchase, offer to purchase, or possess after purchase a bat or any part of a bat, dead or alive,” but a bat may be removed or hunted if the bat is inside or on a building occupied by people.
However, section 63.101 does not apply to an animal control officer, a peace officer, or a health official who captures a bat that the officer or official considers injured or diseased. Also excluded from the section is a person who transports a bat for the purpose of laboratory testing if the bat has exposed or potentially exposed humans or domestic animals to rabies and, or a person who is licensed to provide pest control services.
The number of reported bats captured in homes and buildings is unknown for Garden City, but Lollar said it could happen anywhere, "it's very common especially the time of the year. Young juvenile bats are just learning how to forage and fly on their own. They get confused. They end up in building all the time. We rescued probably 20 in the past couple of weeks in our area."
Sheriff Burnett of Glasscock County said the department is looking into the matter but didn’t have any further comments.