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Reston Zoo Director in Court Friday

Meghan Mogensen is charged with animal cruelty misdemeanor drug possession after wallaby's death.

Meghan Mogensen, the director of the Reston Zoo who was charged in June with animal cruelty and possession of a controlled substance, is scheduled for a 10:45 a.m. hearing in Fairfax County General District Court on Friday.

Mogensen, 26, was arrested June 22 after a months-long investigation revealed suspect practices in the death of an injured wallaby at the petting zoo on the Reston-Vienna border. She was charged with animal cruelty and possession of a controlled substance, both misdemeanors.

Animal Control Officers were alerted in January to a situation at the facility, at 1228 Hunter Mill Road in Vienna, after an employee complained of suspicious circumstances surrounding the death of an adult wallaby.

On Jan. 26, officers opened an investigation relating to allegations of improper treatment of injured animals and improper use of euthanasia drugs. A search warrant was executed on Feb. 16.

an employee told a police officer she had put the wallaby (similar to a small kangaroo) in a crate. He later observed the empty crate next to a water spigot with a five gallon bucket of water.

The warrant says the employee jumped into a dumpster and found a trash bag containing the dead wallaby.

The zoo director told police she euthanized the wallaby by injection with a drug called Beauthanasia and the animal was disposed of properly. However, police said earlier the Reston Zoo does not have the training and certification to do that.

Neither Mogensen nor the zoo has had any comment since the arrest.  The court date was originally scheduled for August, but was moved to Sept. 28.

Scott September 28, 2012 at 09:19 PM
What was the outcome from her 10:45am hearing today?
Karen Goff September 28, 2012 at 10:24 PM
The hearing (bench trial, really) just ended. She was found guilty on both counts. Story will be posted in about an hour.
Jerry October 02, 2012 at 07:55 PM
"The story went viral and militant animal lovers and righteous vegans are using it as their platform to decry zoos, carnivores, leather shoes and pretty much all of mankind." "How can anyone feel bad about drowning a wallaby, then go eat a burger? they demanded. People can kill millions of cows, but whoa, a wallaby is taking it just too far? Washington Post writes: http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/at-the-reston-zoo-a-wallabys-death-exposes-our-hypocrisy/2012/10/01/ec9512f2-0bf7-11e2-bb5e-492c0d30bff6_story.html

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