Two Maine cops were fired and criminally charged for using their batons to club porcupines to death, authorities said.
Addison Cox, 27, and Michael Rolerson, 30, were charged with animal cruelty Friday in connection to videos of them using batons to kill porcupines while on duty for Rockland Police, according to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
The savage beatings were filmed on a cellphone by a third officer who posted the killings to Snapchat, news station WGME reported.
In one case, Rolerson acknowledged to pepper-spraying one of the porcupines before beating it, the outlet reported.
They also face a charge of hunting at night stemming from the incidents, the Bangor Daily News reported.
Cox was additionally charged with unlawful use or possession of implements or aids, while Rolerson was hit with a count of illuminating wild animals or birds.
Police Chief Chris Young said he was notified of the alleged misconduct in late August and the cops were placed on administrative leave while the claims were investigated.
He confirmed the terminations of two officers on Sept. 22, though said he wasn’t permitted to give further details.
“A tremendous amount of power is given to those who wear a badge and are tasked with protecting their communities; it’s a power that I do not take lightly,” Young wrote on Facebook.
“I’m asking you to trust that, if there were an allegation of police misconduct, I would take it very seriously and any investigation would be conducted appropriately, always placing public safety and community trust at the forefront.”
Both Cox and Rolerson are now working with the union that represents them to appeal their dismissals.
They are both scheduled to appear in court on Nov. 9, the Bangor Daily News reported.
With Post wires