Teens spit at RSPCA officer during swan rescue

By Gazette Reporters

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RESCUE: The swan had no long-term injuries and was released back to the river
AN RSPCA officer had her face spat in by members of a group of teenagers who shouted: “Have Corona b****” whilst she was rescuing a swan in Hedon. Animal Welfare Officer Leanne Honess-Heather was helping a swan tangled in fishing line when she was approached by the five male youths aged 16 or 17. The incident happened on Saturday, March 21, close to Rush Lyvars Fishing lake, Preston Road, Hedon. Leanne said: “While the rescue itself was much the same as any other, the reaction from these teenagers was far from it. “The group were in the park nearby and walked over to see what I was doing. I was on my own and wrestling with the swan on the ground when I asked them to stand back for their and the swan’s sake. “They seemed to take offence to
this, which led to two of the group spitting directly into 
my face, going in my mouth and eyes, as they yelled “have Corona b****” at me. “Like many other frontline services, most of my team are still out during this crisis, trying our best to continue to do our job, tending to, collecting and rescuing injured animals. “It’s really challenging working in these difficult conditions and we are doing our very best to keep ourselves and the public safe, while helping the animals who most need us, so this was a really upsetting experience. “I’m happy to say the swan had no long-term injuries and, after being cut free of the fishing line at the vets and being checked over, I released him back to the river.” The RSPCA is providing an emergency-only service to animals through the coronavirus crisis in the wake of Government advice.