Man killed cow for food, won't be charged, police say

Friday, July 24, 2009 4:30 PM
Last updated 4:58 PM
  • Follow Latest News

Authorities said today that no charges will be filed against an Evans man who tied a cow to a tree and beat it to death with a hammer.

“As far as we’re concerned, the matter is closed,” Columbia County sheriff’s Capt. Steve Morris said.

Joel Franco, 48, told police that he purchased the cow in Edgefield, S.C., for a cookout he was holding when his brother visited from out of town, according to a sheriff’s office incident report. Mr. Franco said he tied the cow to a tree and struck the animal two or three times on the top of its head with a 5-pound hammer. He said he started to skin and “quarter” the cow after he thought it was dead.

The incident, which occurred at Mr. Franco’s home on Aspen Laurel Drive in Evans, was reported to police about 7:40 p.m. Tuesday by an anonymous caller, according to the report.

The caller told police that two men took turns beating the animal multiple times on its head with a hammer until it fell to the ground. The caller said the men began to skin the cow while it still appeared to be alive.

Capt. Morris said that an individual’s intent is evaluated in all cases handled by the sheriff’s office.

“There’s no indication that the intent was to torture the animal,” he said. “The intent was to kill the cow, so that it could be processed for food.”

Reach Jenna Martin at 868-1222, ext. 109 or

jenna.martin@augustachronicle.com.

Comments (34) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
Mike_Futrell
3
Points
Mike_Futrell 07/24/09 - 04:34 pm
0
0
Now Mr. Franco only has to

Now Mr. Franco only has to worry about all the true nut cases that want him tied to a tree and beaten with hammers... now might be a good time to invest in a handgun if you don't have one.

gnx
7
Points
gnx 07/24/09 - 04:44 pm
0
0
CC Sheriff's Dept. has it

CC Sheriff's Dept. has it entirely wrong this time. It's obvious the intent was to kill the cow so that it could be processed for food, but the poor cow was tortured in the process. What on earth is this person doing with a cow in a neighborhood setting anyway? Showing his kids 'where your meal comes from and how it's done?' Obviously this is a clear cut case of animal cruelty - had this been a dog or cat Animal Control and the Sheriff's Department would have been all over that man. Just because the man used a similar method to what a slaughter house may have used doesn't mean it was right to do this outside a slaughter house or farm setting.

easy breezy
14
Points
easy breezy 07/24/09 - 04:53 pm
0
0
Columbia County has let us

Columbia County has let us down...well most of us!! This man is a sicko!

silverbullet
5
Points
silverbullet 07/24/09 - 04:57 pm
0
0
YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING

YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I bet if it was a dog there would be charges. I am definitely disappointed in the CCSD.

struggling parent
1
Points
struggling parent 07/24/09 - 05:12 pm
0
0
why couldn't they go to the

why couldn't they go to the butcher shop and buy the meat that way???

nofrills
0
Points
nofrills 07/24/09 - 05:17 pm
0
0
Providing food is fine but

Providing food is fine but how you provide food is the question. Columbia County has dropped the ball on this one. Mr. Franco you are a sick person and I hope somebody beats you in the head only I dont want you to die. I want you to live with a headache the rest of your long long life!

soldout
1280
Points
soldout 07/24/09 - 05:22 pm
0
0
He had the freedom to kill

He had the freedom to kill the cow. He broke no law. Everytime
you buy hamburger you cause more cows to be killed and there are no protesters at meat counter. Everyone seems to love reality TV shows; this is just reality neighborhoods. Some folks may be eating too much soy and getting too in touch with their feminine side. We all love freedom but get upset at other's freedom.

concernmom
403
Points
concernmom 07/24/09 - 05:37 pm
0
0
It's not about killing the

It's not about killing the cow; it is the inhumane way he killed the cow. HUMANE is the key word, not kill. He could have shot the cow in the head several times- that would kill the cow! Society has become insensitive & desensitized to all types of killing; abortions, euthanizing the disabled, elderly and some "terminally" ill patients, and other such horrific atrocities. Oh yeah, and I am conservative- pro-life, too!!!

neighborofcowkiller
0
Points
neighborofcowkiller 07/24/09 - 05:49 pm
0
0
first of all concernmom,

first of all concernmom, there is no such thing as a humane way to kill a cow. and who on earth would shoot a cow in the head several times? secondly how do you think a chicken feels when you ring its neck. or a catfish when you skin it. or a lobster in a boiling pot of water? honestly im only upset because i havent yet been invited to his cookout. thats ok though...

TakeAstand
13
Points
TakeAstand 07/24/09 - 05:50 pm
0
0
Sold out, there is a

Sold out, there is a difference in killing a cow for food and inhumanely killing a cow for food. Protestors for years have picketed slaughterhouses when they are found to inhumanely kill thier animal, where have you been??? It takes a sick person to stand thier and beat any living creature to death. It appears this man has a history of violence according to the CCSO, or it just runs in the family. NO DOUBT IN MY MIND HE DID IT WITH INTENT TO TORTURE!!!!!!!! It takes a violent sick person to do this, not just a hungry one, unless yu are on a deserted island dying!!! They probably got some kind of sick enjoyment out of it, I wonder how the witnesses say they were acting while doing it.

TakeAstand
13
Points
TakeAstand 07/24/09 - 06:12 pm
0
0
There is a humane way to kill

There is a humane way to kill a cow neighbor... if some [filtered word] was going to kill you would you rather it be quick shot in the head or beaten to death slowly and then skinned alive??? I agree with boiling lobsters is inhumane, and at least with the chicken its done quickly. Thats why those animanl rights groups protest the horrible way that some sick individuals get off on torturing and slowly killing animals at these slaughterhouses. Once again, if death was definate for you would you want it to be quick and painless or slow and torturous?

Why ME
0
Points
Why ME 07/24/09 - 06:14 pm
0
0
eat more chicken!

eat more chicken!

concernmom
403
Points
concernmom 07/24/09 - 06:18 pm
0
0
neighbor, you are way off

neighbor, you are way off base. beating an animal in the head and skinning while alive is beyond horrific! that's why hunters use rifles, not hammers...think about that one...

UncleRemus
26
Points
UncleRemus 07/24/09 - 06:39 pm
0
0
Well, that neighborhood has 3

Well, that neighborhood has 3 acre + lots and the houses go from $400,000.00 to a million.He could have been arrested if he had discharged a firearm in the neighborhood to kill the cow.
Sounds like the "anonymous caller" was a nosy neighbor with binoculars and a bone to pick.

imdstuf
10
Points
imdstuf 07/24/09 - 06:58 pm
0
0
To think all these years I

To think all these years I have been buying meat in grocery stores already cut up for me. How silly of me. I guess Doug's Meat Shop, the NY Deli, etc charge too much compared to getting the cow and doing it yourself.

neighborofcowkiller
0
Points
neighborofcowkiller 07/24/09 - 06:58 pm
0
0
its funny how everyone on

its funny how everyone on this page talks of using a gun to kill the cow but i bet nobody here has the balls to hold a gun to its head and pull the trigger. lets face it this guy has got some guts.

TakeAstand
13
Points
TakeAstand 07/24/09 - 07:17 pm
0
0
guts??? oh brother, what a

guts??? oh brother, what a neighborhood that is out there!! Glad we know where NOT to move. Bunch of sickos out there evidently. Now where's the answer to my question? And Uncle, if he has that much money to live in a place like that, then the only reason he did what he did was for the fun and experience of it, he could have afforded to get his beef in other ways, he also had other ways to kill it other than a hammer or a gun! He's just a sick cold person to be able to stand there and beat something live like that. And he could have used a hammer if he was smart enough to know how to do it with put the cow down instantly! This dude evidently just went to whacking it and didnt even kill it before skinning it! I hope there were no children around witnessing this.

fred1217
4
Points
fred1217 07/24/09 - 07:33 pm
0
0
Was this for a wedding? I

Was this for a wedding? I love that TV show where they butcher animals for southern weddings. Then they go 4 wheel riding or pig wrestling afterwards.

Tots
26068
Points
Tots 07/24/09 - 07:43 pm
0
0
Neighborofcowkiller@6:58-I

Neighborofcowkiller@6:58-I would not say the man has guts.Well maybe cow guts.

Tots
26068
Points
Tots 07/24/09 - 07:46 pm
0
0
I think like most people on

I think like most people on here .If you live in a neighborhood they should have taken the cow to a butcher.

Tots
26068
Points
Tots 07/24/09 - 08:04 pm
0
0
Neighborofcowkiller@6:58-In

Neighborofcowkiller@6:58-In Thomson we lived on sixity six acres of land.We had a dog that attacked my baby boy.He had attacked other people before.But that day I took that dog to the back field held my .38 to it's head.Problem solved.I dont have balls.I did'nt like haveing to put the dog down.

pizzato
3
Points
pizzato 07/24/09 - 08:51 pm
0
0
At Shapiro those guys killed

At Shapiro those guys killed the cows with an air hammer to the skull sometimes a bull would take two or three hits to drop. The price of ammo these days a hammer would probably be the right way or else slash the throat like the jews do.

aaa
2
Points
aaa 07/24/09 - 08:52 pm
0
0
CCSD obviously got this one

CCSD obviously got this one right. Time for you pansy girly liberals to sit down and shut up. It was the dumbest of all animals - a stupid cow! I hope that all who feasted upon it's delicious meat also relaxed after dinner with a fine cigar! Grow up people! Live your own miserable, depressed liberal lives and leave the rest of us alone. I plan to purchase a hog this weekend and will also use a hammer to the head before grilling up those delicious ribs!

corgimom
33965
Points
corgimom 07/24/09 - 10:08 pm
0
0
Concernmom, how do you think

Concernmom, how do you think they killed cows in the old days? They hit them with a sledgehammer, and those farmers knew just where to hit- between the eyes. One blow. Dead. You don't hit them over the head. And concernmom, where do you think hamburger comes from? How do you think they kill the cows today? How do you think they kill them in say, Mexico or Peru or in Africa? It has nothing to do with abortion and euthenasia, and how bizarre of you to connect them.

laro247
132
Points
laro247 07/24/09 - 10:17 pm
0
0
Well, my neighbors aren't as

Well, my neighbors aren't as bad as I thought. One works on cars in his front yard every day of the week and another one drags their dining room furniture out in the front yard and uses it like lawn furniture but, they haven't beaten a cow to death yet. But now that they know it's ok who knows.

DEVGRU
0
Points
DEVGRU 07/24/09 - 10:19 pm
0
0
The man can kill for food.

The man can kill for food. The animal moving doesn't mean it was still alive necessarily. Dead things still move. You people who live in your own little worlds, are sickening. You don't hunt, you don't fish. If you had to take care of yourselves and your families on your own you couldn't do it. You don't mind eating that hamburger or steak, but just don't kill it in front of me. Wake up and look in the mirror. You are disgusting sights. You are the same people who call the Columbia County Sheriff's Department to come help you go into your houses at night because you are scared to go by yourselves. I know this for a fact. True American failures. And for those of you whining about if it had been a dog or cat. Well, ding-dongs, I can't remember ever eating a dog or cat in the country. Boy I'll bet those steaks are gonna be good.

fred1217
4
Points
fred1217 07/24/09 - 11:09 pm
0
0
Too bad this didn't happen in

Too bad this didn't happen in Richmond County. There would be 200 posts on here on Animal Sacrifices, Section 8 Housing, Public School System failure, the connection between out of wedlock child birth and premature cow skinning, and the failure of President Obama's Food and Drug Administration, etc., etc. Instead we celebrate this as a Ritual of Passage of Man, killing for food.

crackertroy
540
Points
crackertroy 07/25/09 - 12:30 am
0
0
In this economy, I suppose
Unpublished

In this economy, I suppose you gotta do what you gotta do to eat

TakeAstand
13
Points
TakeAstand 07/25/09 - 01:02 am
0
0
This aint the old days and

This aint the old days and this aint mexico corgimom... you said it right, one whack and they are dead becuase they knew what they were doing. They don't slowly beat them to death taking turn with thier buddies for the fun of it, this guy already exibited violent behavior on humans, so killing it for eating wasnt the only thing on his agenda IMO! I ask you the same thing I asked neighbor, if you were fixing to be killed would you rather it be quick and painless or slowly beat to death?

TakeAstand
13
Points
TakeAstand 07/25/09 - 01:03 am
0
0
Cestlavie, just like the

Cestlavie, just like the others, you just don't get it... I ask you the same question I did right above.

Back to Top

Top headlines

Azziz UNLV president finalist

Ricardo Azziz, who has been mentioned in the past for other open university positions in Florida and Texas, is one of three finalists for the position.
Search Augusta jobs