Two California college students were jailed Monday after a turkey they allegedly stole was found wandering in the street reeking of beer and suffering from a broken toe, missing feathers and other injuries.
The Orange County Register reported Tuesday that Tim the Turkey was being treated by a veterinarian. The paper also reported the turkey had trouble breathing and suffered several other injuries.
Steven Koressel, 23, and Richard Brenton Melbye, 21, were arrested and booked into the Orange County Jail, according to police and inmate records. They were released on their own recognizance.
Orange High School agriculture teacher Patti Williams said the turkey vanished from his pen sometime between Saturday night and Sunday morning. After she circulated his photo, several people found him wandering on a street and corralled him.
Koressel and Brenton both play lacrosse at Chapman University, KTLA reported. A university spokesman confirmed the two arrested students were members of the lacrosse team, but couldn’t identify them under student privacy laws.
"Two Chapman students have been identified and arrested by the Orange Police Department in the incident in which the turkey was abducted from Orange High School. The University will also undertake the appropriate disciplinary actions according to our Student Conduct Code," according to a university statement.
"The University will not tolerate any instances of theft, animal abuse or cruelty, is appalled by this behavior, and takes this issue extremely seriously."
Williams said the turkey is a “sweet part of our program and petting zoo.”
Tim the Turkey is an American heritage Slate turkey. According to Heritage Foods, the turkey was nearly extinct by the late 20th century.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.