A French zookeeper has been sentenced to prison for beating an ostrich to death.
The zookeeper initially blamed the ostrich’s death on an innocent pony that shared a pen with the bird and claimed that the aging pony kicked the ostrich. The zookeeper was arrested, however, when coworkers told police that they actually witnessed the man beating the ostrich with a shovel.
After an investigation into the ostrich’s death, it was revealed that the animal died from a massive blow to the head. The zookeeper in La Teste-de-Buch, southwestern France, was immediately fired from his job of 15 years and forced to pay an almost $7,000 fine.
After a criminal trial, the zookeeper was ultimately found guilty of animal cruelty and sentenced to six months in prison, although four of those months were suspended.