PRESTON, Idaho – The animal rights group PETA and Vic A Pearson, a prosecuting attorney in Idaho’s Franklin County responded Tuesday to reports of an Idaho teacher feeding a puppy to a snapping turtle.

Fox 13 reported Monday that authorities said a science teacher, Robert Crosland, fed a live puppy to one of his reptiles in front of students.

Pearson announced that due to a conflict of interest, investigation on the incident was turned over to an attorney at the 6th Judicial District. Pearson asked for the public’s patience while attorneys investigated:

PETA Senior Director of Cruelty Casework Stephanie Bell condemned the teacher’s alleged action in the following statement:

PETA has learned that witnesses, including students, reportedly watched this teacher place a live puppy into a tank with a snapping turtle, who attacked and nearly cut the dog in half, as the animal screamed. This teacher—who is allegedly known for feeding guinea pigs to reptiles during lessons—is a bully who should not be allowed near impressionable young people. Any youngster who witnessed cruelty in the classroom is now in desperate need of lessons about having empathy for other living beings.

We understand that the case has been forwarded to the prosecutor’s office for a review of potential criminal charges, and TeachKind—PETA’s humane education division—is urging the school district to take this incident just as seriously.”

Preston School District Superintendent, Mark Gee, says Mr. Crossland is still employed at Preston Junior High and while the incident is under investigation, he’s not been placed on administrative leave.

“District administration was made aware of the issue soon after it occurred and immediately began the process of investigation and taking steps to ensure that this type of action could not be repeated,” Idaho’s Preston School District said Monday. ” A part of any investigation includes determining the best course of action once the facts of the matter have been ascertained.”

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