The Washington Humane Society is trying to find out who apparently tied up a bird and beat it to death.
The bird, a female robin, was found tied to a tree at the intersection of Biltmore Street and Cliffbourne Place NW in Adams Morgan. A passerby saw it Sunday and called the Humane Society, which conducted a necropsy.
The results, according to Humane Society vice president Scott Giacoppo, demonstrated that the bird was still alive when it was tied up. It died of blunt-force trauma, the sort of injuries that would happen if humans intentionally swung it around or pummeled it.
“These types of injuries could not have been obtained by her flying into a window, for instance, or being hit by a car. They’re consistent with acts of physical violence,” Giacoppo said. “This was intentional, with malice, with severe brutality.”
Giacoppo said the bird may have already been stunned from flying into a window or may have been otherwise injured, or the perpetrator may have used a net to ensnare the bird before tying it up.
The Humane Society put up flyers around Adams Morgan and posted on social media that it would offer a $3,000 reward for information about the perpetrator.
Giacoppo said that people convicted of abusing animals face up to 180 days in jail for misdemeanor charges, such as leaving a dog in a hot car or failing to take a sick pet to a veterinarian, and up to five years in jail for felony charges, which he said he would like to see brought in this case.
“A lot of people will question, ‘She’s just a bird, a robin. What’s the big deal?’ We take every instance as seriously as every other one,” Giacoppo said. “It doesn’t matter if it’s a bird, a cat, a dog. That’s what was committed against this animal: It was basically beaten to death.”