Volunteer seeks help in finding goat stolen from Gillies Creek Park

Published: Nov. 24, 2022 at 6:17 PM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Volunteers at Gilles Creek Park are praying for a holiday miracle after they say one of the community goats was tied up and taken.

Volunteer Triston Noble says a witness told him that the thieves tried to steal a second goat, but bystanders chased them off, but two days after calling the police, he says the park workers are still searching for answers.

“These are human-friendly goats. They’re used to people,” Noble said. “These goats have been here for over six years for community engagement, for families to come and enjoy time with animals.”

Noble says the thieves used a storage shed outside the goat’s enclosure to gain enough footing to hop over the fence. Once on the other side of the enclosure they grabbed dome rope and started tying them up.

“They were just bound, gagged and tossed over a fence and thrown into a pickup truck. It’s unacceptable,” he said.

Noble says some disc golfer saw the thieves trying to nab a second goat, which stopped them, but not before they drove off with Mary, the oldest of four goats at the park.

Nobel said a witness told him that all four men were wearing hoodies and that they looked familiar as if they frequented the park often.

”The truck they were driving is a lifted white and silver Chevy, we’ve seen this truck before kind of milling about, but we never thought anything of it,” he said.

Noble says police were notified of the crime within hours of it happening but that they didn’t get much of a response from police. He says he filed a report from Richmond police Wednesday.

“There was so much time that was wasted and so much time that lapsed since someone directly saw this happen. It’s really unfortunate,” Noble.

Nobel also fears Mary’s fate considering she was stolen just days before the holiday.

“We have a lot of concerns about just what might’ve happened to her just before Thanksgiving,“ Noble said.

It’s why the volunteers are spreading the word. Nobel and the other volunteers hope to elicit a faster police response and pressure the thieves to bring Mary home.

“That’s the one thing I’m worried won’t happen,” Noble said. “That would be a huge weight lifted off our shoulders, and it would restore a lot of trust and faith in the community.”

For the time being, the other three goats will be in a private enclosure for their safety.

Before the goats return, Nobel says he and the other volunteers are trying to raise funds to purchase security cameras to prevent another incident.

In the meantime, police are urging anyone with information to call crime stoppers at 804-780-1000.