Animal rights activist: County should pursue death-threat case

By on October 1, 2010

Kane County officials cite lack of evidence for prosecution
by Martha Quetsch
ELBURN—Animal rights activist Steve Hindi of Elburn said Tuesday he is disappointed that local authorities will not prosecute an individual who allegedly threatened his life in online comments.

Hindi, president of Showing Animals Respect and Kindness (S.H.A.R.K.), filed a report this summer with the Kane County Sheriff’s Department and notified the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office about a reader’s online comment on a Wyoming newspaper website June 19.

In his police report, Hindi said the online comment referred to an article that appeared in the newspaper in which Hindi was quoted objecting to horses receiving electric shocks during a Wyoming rodeo.

He said the comment, which the newspaper removed from its website, stated:
“Steve Hindi’s days are numbered. I hope he shows up at Cheyenne frontier days. That would be the last rodeo he will ever attend. You animal worshippers need to get a life. Too bad you hate humans and want humans gone while you worship animals. Btw, I killed three prairie dogs today and didn’t even use a weapon.”

Hindi also said someone sent S.H.A.R.K. an e-mail stating, “You show up in Wyoming again and you will go home wearing a toe tag.”

In a July 14 case report, Kane County Sheriff’s Detective Steve Reitmeyer stated that he had informed Hindi’s attorney that since the threatening e-mail to S.H.A.R.K. did not mention Hindi by name, the case did not meet the requirements necessary to obtain charges.

Kane County First Assistant State’s Attorney Jody Gleason, in a Sept. 16 letter to Hindi, stated that after conferring with Reitmeyer, her office did not believe enough evidence existed to file charges against the suspect.

On Tuesday, Hindi told the Elburn Herald, “Why they (the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office) are refusing to do their job is difficult to understand.”

In her Sept. 16 letter to Hindi, Gleason acknowledged that the Kane County State’s Attorney in the past has filed charges against people who have threatened Hindi and will continue to do so when enough evidence exists to prosecute.

The Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office in 2009 prosecuted an individual who made repeated, threatening phone calls to S.H.A.R.K.