Police are stepping up patrols on Pittsburgh’s South Side after a group of teens assaulted a donkey.
The donkey is there with a purpose: to protect goats.
"The donkey is in the pen with the goats in order to protect the goats from other wildlife. So, it was particularly disturbing that someone was attacking the donkey,” said Sarah Baxendell of Hilltop Alliance.
The goats are there to clear the brush on a 6-acre stretch of South Side Park known as Jurassic Valley.
Coleen Lutz lives above the valley. She told Channel 11 that two nights ago, she saw six teenagers climb the fence to assault the donkey.
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"When I came out on the porch, I saw one down there by the donkey, trying to ride it like a horse,” Lutz said.
At first, she thought it was a volunteer but quickly realized they were up to no good, so she called 911.
"They must have been spooked by the door slamming, because they climbed back over the fence and as they walked down the trail they were throwing rocks at the goats as they walked past,” Lutz said.
On Aug. 1, someone stole solar power equipment from the site and 400 feet of electric fencing that surrounds the animals.
That allowed the goats to get loose.
Baxendell believe people don’t understand what the goats are doing and why they are there.
"The goats are really there to help us make the first dig into removing all the invasive vines so we can begin to restore the park acres so the public can reuse them,” she said.
The animals are all doing fine.
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