BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A Maryland roadside zoo is facing a lawsuit over their alleged violations of state cruelty laws and the federal Endangered Species Act.
According to a release from the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF), Deer Haven Mini Zoo, in Keymar, Md., was served with a notice of intent to sue.
The possible lawsuit comes after the ALDF says it has “extensive video and photographic evidence, visitor observations, and U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection reports” that show the animals at Deer Haven Mini Zoo are “suffering in cruel conditions.”
The roadside zoo is also said to be a public safety hazard, as multiple people have reportedly been injured by animals there.
Along with the notice of intent to sue, the ALDF also offered to assist with relocating the animals to sanctuaries. Though the ALDF warned that their lawsuit will continue in both federal and state court if the zoo’s treatment of their animals continue.
Multiple people have reportedly been injured by animals at the roadside zoo.
“The Animal Legal Defense Fund has documented visibly sick animals, some without water in intense heat, and living in barren animal enclosures in severe disrepair with significant accumulations of feces and waste,” Animal Legal Defense Fund Executive Director Stephen Wells said in a release. “We hope Deer Haven Mini Zoo will cooperate with the Animal Legal Defense Fund to quickly move these animals to sanctuaries where they will receive the care they need.”
Federal inspections have also cited the zoo for multiple violations of their lemurs, which are endangered. The zoo reportedly does not have “an enrichment plan to promote the psychological well-being of the animals, which is mandatory for non-human primates under the Animal Welfare Act.