The deceptively-named People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has launched a full scale media blitz offering a reward for information on the whereabouts of a chimp named Tonka — seemingly just to intimidate a Missouri woman who stood up to them.
The organization is accusing Tonia Haddix, their former caretaker and owner, of hiding him from them — prompting a wave of harassment against her. She maintains that the chimp is deceased, and PETA has produced no evidence to the contrary.
PETA is teaming up with washed up actor Alan Cumming to offer a $20,000 reward for information on the chimp — despite the lack of evidence that he is alive. Their campaign included having their press release reprinted in dozens of media outlets, without Haddix, who is currently battling cancer, having a chance to defend herself. It has also prompted hate messages and harassment directed towards her.
Alan Cumming is working with PETA to find Tonka the chimpanzee, who mysteriously disappeared after they filmed the 1997 movie ‘Buddy’ together. https://t.co/qg6npoJQPj
— VANITY FAIR (@VanityFair) April 29, 2022
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“I spent the last five years fighting for the chimps to remain in the only home they have known, and because of me standing up for these kids I have been nothing but terrorized by PETA and their agenda. I’ve attempted to have DNA testing done on some of Tonka’s remains and offered to take a lie detector test — but that’s not what PETA wants. They want to continue to punish anyone for standing up against them,” Haddix told the Gateway Pundit.
As the Gateway Pundit has previously reported, last year, Haddix was ordered to turn over seven chimpanzees that she inherited and cared for to the controversial organization — despite a dire warning from their veterinarian that they would be in grave danger being transferred to a new facility.
PETA described the enclosures at the Missouri Primate Foundation as “small and barren,” but when the Gateway Pundit visited, the actual magnitude of their living area was impressive.
Haddix had inherited the chimps five years ago from Connie Casey, who ran the Missouri Primate Foundation, once she became unable to continue caring for them. She also inherited Casey’s battle with PETA, despite never having any complaints of neglect of mistreatment against her.
According to Haddix and her veterinarian, one of the chimps, a 40-year-old named Tonka, passed away months before PETA seized the animals.
Tonka, in his youth, appeared alongside Cumming in the movie Buddy.
Though Cumming did not check in on the animal for over 25 years, he suddenly claimed to be a passionate friend of the animal when PETA began trying to seize him.
On Thursday, the washed-up actor announced that he was matching PETA’s $10,000 reward for information on the location of Tonka.
“During the months we filmed together, baby Tonka and I became good friends, playing and grooming each other and just generally larking about,” Cumming said in a statement. “It’s horrible to think he might be in a cage in a dark basement somewhere or have met some other fate, so I’m appealing to whoever knows what has become of him to please come forward and claim the reward.”
During the trial over the seven chimps, a veterinarian testified that he had suggested the animal be put down due to the rapidly declining health, but Haddix wanted to keep trying to help him. She did this while knowing that PETA would be seizing him, out of great love for the primate.
Unfortunately, the veterinarian and Haddix say that her efforts were unsuccessful and he ultimately succumbed to his heart condition. He lived to quite an old age for a chimp.
The judge in the case stated, “I’m going to order that within seven days of today’s date, Ms. Haddix provide to Mr. Goodman proof that the chimpanzee, Tonka, has — is deceased. And I don’t know what that proof will be, but we need something.”
In order to comply, Haddix provided the chimp’s veterinarian’s affidavit, offered to provide the organization with ashes from the chimp’s cremation, a photo of him post mortem, offered to allow them to come to her property, and offered take a lie detector test and pay for it out of her own pocket.
None of this was good enough for PETA — and their lawyer Jared Goodman continued to press for contempt charges against Haddix.
In January, Judge Catherine D. Perry, a federal judge in the Eastern District of Missouri, sided with Haddix in determining their claims to be ridiculous and unfounded — even though PETA was dumping hundreds of thousands of dollars into their case against her and she was representing herself pro-se.
“Today was a very hard day, having to relive Tonka’s death over and continue defending myself against PETA,” Haddix told the Gateway Pundit at the time. “I am praying to put this chapter of my life to rest and focus on my health — and continue to help any animal out there that needs it.”
“I will continue to support private ownership and fight for our rights against the terrorist group PETA,” Haddix continued.
It is reasonable to believe that the reward money and witch hunt is retaliation for their loss and Haddix speaking out.
PETA often sells themselves as trying to protect animals from being killed, but they hypocritically murder thousands of adoptable pets each year at their Virginia headquarters.
Documents uncovered by PETAKillsAnimals.com indicated that following an inspection of the PETA facilities, the Commonwealth of Virginia was so shocked by the number of animals they kill each year that the state inspector attempted to revoke their license to operate a shelter.
Dr. Daniel Kovich, the investigator with the VDACS that inspected PETA’s animal shelter in July 2010 determined “the facility does not contain sufficient animal enclosures to routinely house the number of animals annually reported as taken into custody.”
It turns out that PETA has never intended to keep animals that are surrendered to them.
“After reviewing two months worth of records, Kovich found that 245 of the 290 animals–84 percent–that PETA took into custody were killed within 24 hours. Only 17 were reported as adopted or in foster homes. Kovich noted that PETA’s shelter did not meet PETA’s own published guidelines for operating a humane animal shelter,” PETA Kills Animals reports.
In 2019, PETA killed 1,500 cats and dogs. The following year, PETA’s so-called “shelter” took in 2,650 animals and euthanized 67% of the 1,763 animals.