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Paso Robles man charged with felony animal cruelty for burning baby steer

Kaplan is accused of dousing a five-month-old steer with lighter fluid and setting the animal on fire.
Kaplan is accused of dousing a five-month-old steer with lighter fluid and setting the animal on fire.Paso Robles Police Department

There has been no reason offered why Garrett Kaplan, 23, allegedly set a five-month-old steer on fire at the agriculture barn on the Paso Robles High School campus in Paso Robles, Calif. reported the PasoRoblesDailyNews.com.

Kaplan has been charged with felony animal cruelty, according to a press release by the Paso Robles Police Department, for the burning of a steer named Panda. Although the steer suffered significant injuries and was reportedly doused with lighter fluid and set on fire, he is expected to survive.

On the morning of October 26, 2013, the student who was raising the steer as part of the Future Farmers of America program found the animal in the barn burned.

The Pioneer Ag Resource website stated:

“Panda was most severely burned on his face and around his eyes but he also sustained severe burns over his shoulders and down his backline. Several veterinarians have come to the rescue to provide some pain relief for Panda and treatment to aid in his recovery. We will all be looking for them at the fair in July.”

A reward fund was organized to find the heartless culprit. After an extensive investigation, Kaplan was arrested at his home on 1100 block of Dorothy Street and booked into the San Luis Obispo County Jail. The warrant for Kaplan's arrest was issued on May 23.

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