Man Accused of Kicking Swans in the Head for ‘Karate Practice’

trumpeter swan

A man accused of kicking swans in the head for “karate practice” at a Florida park last week is facing animal cruelty charges.

Police arrested Rocco Mantella, 34, after responding to a call at Lake Eola Park in Orlando the morning of April 26 for kicking three swans and a sleeping duck with such force that one of the animals collapsed, the Indianapolis Star reported.

According to an arrest affidavit, a witness told the police that Mantella kicked two swans in the head and one in the backside. The witness added that he also kicked a sleeping duck.

Multiple witnesses told the police that Mantella struck one swan several times, the affidavit states.

Orlando Police charged Mantella with one felony count of aggravated animal cruelty, alleging that he was aware his actions would cause serious injury or death to the animals, WKMG reported.

Mantella was booked into Orange County Jail on $1,000 bond and is banned from entering Lake Eola due to his alleged actions.

Authorities were unable to locate the injured swans following the incident.


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