I’ve had several people ask me if this story out of Virginia about a farmer who stopped a thief from stealing his goats is me, and no, it’s not, though I’m definitely on #TeamGoat. The two guys above are Casper the Friendly Goat and Sharkboy; two of the eight goats that are currently living on my small farm in central Virginia.
In this case, however, it was a farmer in Stafford County, about forty miles south of Washington, D.C. who alerted authorities to tell them he was holding a would-be goat rustler at gunpoint in one of his fields the other night.
The farmer told deputies his wife had gone outside to check on their goats and discovered they’d been let out of their pen.
The farmer tracked the suspect to the field, where he found the man apparently intoxicated and slurring his words, the department said. Three goats were tied up next to the suspect’s truck.
According to the sheriff’s office, the suspect actually passed a breathalyzer test and was only pretending to be intoxicated. I guess the thinking was getting drunk and trying to steal goats was going to look better than trying to abscond with the animals while stone-cold sober.
The farmer eventually recognized the suspect as someone he had sold goats to in the past. 19-year old Cole Schrock was allegedly looking for a five-fingered discount this time around, but instead of goating.. er, getting away with it, he’s now facing charges of larceny of animals, identity theft to avoid arrest and unlawful entry with the intent to commit larceny.
Thankfully, I haven’t had any two-legged intruders try to take any of my livestock in the seven years I’ve lived in rural Virginia, but like everyone else who raises chickens, goats, or other small farm animals, we’ve had to deal with everything from foxes and snakes to raccoons and coyotes, and I’m kind of surprised that Schrock apparently thought it was a good idea to go wandering across someone’s property late at night in a rural area to mess with their livestock. Certainly not everyone out here is armed, but chances were good that Schrock was going to run up against an armed citizen prepared to defend his herd.
Thankfully it sounds like no harm was done to the farmer, his family, or his goats, and hopefully Schrock will learn a lesson from his attempted late night goat grab. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have this sudden urge to go check on Casper, Sharkboy, and the rest of my goats for some reason.