Media Report Index

ABC Online " 17 Jan 07
Videos posted on YouTube.com

Channel 7 News " 28 Sept 06 Government issues permit for Marrabel Rodeo despite animal cruelty conviction. Democrats call for ban.
Channel 7 News " 29 August 06 Bullrider changes his guilty plea for assaulting anti-rodeo activist to 'not guilty' and is set for trial.
Channel 10 News" 29 August 06 Bullrider changes his guilty plea for assaulting anti-rodeo activist to 'not guilty' and is set for trial.
Channel 10 News" 26 August 06 Government steps to combat animal cruelty labelled as 'lame'.
Channel 7 News " 26 August 06 Government announces 'tough new animal cruelty laws'. This is a statement that is strongly disputed by Jeanie Walker.
ABC 'Stateline' • 25 August 2006 Why is the government still issuing permits for Marrabel Rodeo?

Channel 7 News " 17 August 06 RSPCA forced to withdraw charges against Marrabel Rodeo stock contractor because Code of Practice 'not enforceable'.

Today Tonight • 20 July 06
Is the RSPCA equipt to deal with rodeos?
Today Tonight • 8 May 06
Will Watson pleads guilty to assaulting Janet Allan
Channel 10 News" 8 May 06 Victorian bull rider pleads guilty to assaulting anti-rodeo protestor at Marrabel Bull Ride
Today Tonight • 3 May 06
State MP says he's disappointed he missed seeing Janet Allan assaulted and would have clapped
The Advertiser " 4 April 06 Marrabel Rodeo organiser convicted of animal cruelty
ABC Channel 2 News " 4 April 06 Marrabel Rodeo organiser convicted of animal cruelty
Channel 7 News " 4 April 06 Marrabel Rodeo organiser convicted of animal cruelty

Channel 10 News " 4 Apr 06 Marrabel Rodeo organiser convicted of animal cruelty

The Leader • 14 Mar 06
Election posters stolen
ABC Radio • 9 Mar 06
Family First say animals were given to mankind to enjoy
ABC Radio • 8 Mar 06
Theft of No Rodeo posters
ABC Radio • 8 Mar 06
Major parties preference Stuart No Rodeo candidate last
ABC Radio • 7 Mar 06
Growing interest of rodeo debate
Whyalla News • 2 Mar 06
Candidate stands to oppose cruelty in rodeo
The Bunyip • 1 Mar 06
Stealing election signs
ABC Radio & TV • 25 Feb 06
Democrats to introduce legislation to ban rodeo
ABC Rural Radio • 8 Feb 06
No Rodeo Candidate for Stuart joins the 'rodeo' debate
ABC Radio • 6 Feb 06
For the first time Country hour opens lines to callers so they can discuss rodeo debate
Psychologists for the Promotion of Animal Welfare Media Release 6 Feb 06
ABC On Line • 6 Feb 06
Rodeo debate
ABC Rural Radio • 3 Feb 06
Cruelty at Wilmington where patrons with cameras were refused entry
Stock Journal • 2 Feb 06
Rodeo organisers defending rodeo
Advertiser • 27 Jan 06
Letter: from Animal Welfare League
Channel 10 News • 27 Jan 06
Rodeo cruelty at Port Lincoln
Victor Harbour Times • 26 Jan 06
Letter: Rodeo concerns
Southern Times Messenger • 25 Jan 06 Letter: Rodeo Animals
The Bunyip • 18 Jan 06
The rodeo debate - cruelty or recreation?
Today Tonight • 16 Jan 06
Rodeo bullies threaten patrons with video cameras
Today Tonight • 13 Jan 06
Cruel cowboys caught out again
Southern Times 11 Jan 06
Yankailla to be watched by RSPCA
The Bunyip 5 Jan 2006
Two Wells organiser claims a success, despite death of horse
Radio 5AA • 5 Jan 2006
Rodeo Cruelty - Response to Today Tonight
Today Tonight • 4 Jan 2006
Horrific cruelty inherent in rodeo
The Bunyip • 4 Jan 2006
Two Wells Rodeo
The Bunyip • 21 Dec 2005
Two Wells Rodeo
Channel 10 News • 19 Dec 05 Bullrider did not make court appearance
Southern Times Messenger • 13 Dec 2005 • Yankalilla Rodeo Cruelty
The Bunyip 7 December 2005
New Two Wells rodeo committee
Sunday Mail 13 November 2005
No Rodeo candidates
Port Pirie Recorder • 13 Oct 2005 Baroota rodeo cruelty & danger
Channel 7 News • 9 Oct 2005
Baroota rodeo cruelty & danger
ABC 'Stateline' • 30 Sep 2005 Marrabel rodeo
'The Bunyip' • 28 Sep 2005
Marrabel rodeo
'The Advertiser September 2005
Buck the rodeo
Channel 7 News • 8 Aug 2005 Marrabel RSPCA Prosecution
Channel 10 News • 9 May 2005 Marrabel RSPCA prosecution
Today Tonight • 14 Mar 2005 Cruelty & Assault at Marrabel
Today Tonight • 9 Feb 2005
South Australian Rodeo Cruelty
Channel 10 News • 6 Oct 2004 Cruelty at Marrabel rodeo


Rodeo cruelty in the news

The following summaries are from items which have appeared in South Australian media; some aired nationally. Jeanie and/or Troy Walker were were interviewed in the majority of these segments, the final pieces were compiled at the discretion of the reporter and editors.

     

ABC Online 17 January 2007

Videos of alleged animal cruelty at rodeos around South Australia have been posted on a popular, free video sharing website by anti-rodeo campaigners. The videos show animals struggling wildly in stalls, as well as animal injuries.

View complete story


     

Channel 7 Evening News 28 September 2006

The government has issued a permit for this weekends Marrabel Rodeo despite 2 convictions for animal cruelty from the 2004 event. Jeanie Walker expresses her dismay and Democrats Leader, Sandra Kanck announces that she is drafting a bill to have rodeos outlawed.

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Channel 7 Evening News 29 August 2006

Victorian bullrider Will Watson who last month pleaded guilty to assaulting anti-rodeo activist, Janet Allan at the Marrabel Bull Ride in 2005 was due to be sentenced today but changed his plea to 'not guity'. The magistrate was not impressed and accused Watson, 21, of 'shopping around' for a magistrate. The case is now set for trial in February 2007.

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Channel 10 Evening News 29 August 2006

Victorian bullrider Will Watson who last month pleaded guilty to assaulting anti-rodeo activist, Janet Allan at the Marrabel Bull Ride in 2005 was due to be sentenced today but changed his plea to 'not guity'. The magistrate was not impressed and accused Watson, 21, of 'shopping around' for a magistrate. The case is now set for trial in February 2007.

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Channel 10 Evening News 26 August 2006

Minister Gail Gago announces 'tough new animal cruelty laws', which will be put before Parliament in the new year.

Jeanie Walker labels the announcement and new laws as 'lame'.

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Channel 7 Evening News 26 August 2006

Minister Gail Gago announces 'tough new measures' to combat animal cruelty. Jeanie Walker claims that the new laws will not go far enough and do nothing to protect animals used in rodeos or intensively farmed.

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ABC TV 'Stateline' 25 August 2006
Reporter: Simon Royal

This weekend the 70th annual Marrabel rodeo will be held in the State's north, but will it be the last? rodeos to be banned.

In a shock move last week, the RSPCA dropped charges against a contractor for using electric cattle prods on animals at the Marrabel Rodeo. It was seen as a crucial test of the State's code of conduct for rodeos. But instead it's raised more questions about the legal difficulties of enforcing animal cruelty laws. Simon Royal has the story.


View Complete Transcript.
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Channel 7 Evening News 17 August 2006

The RSPCA was forced to withdraw charges against one of the stock contractors, Gavin Woodall, from the Marrabel Rodeo on October 3rd 2004, after a 'loophole' was found in the Code of Practice for the Care and Treatment of Rodeo animals by his lawyer. Jeanie Walker stated that 'the rodeo people wrote the Code of Practice so they knew exactly where to find the loopholes and were able to easily exploit them. She said that rodeos needed to banned as they cannot be policed.

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Today Tonight20 July 2006

Today Tonight explores whether an underresourced private charity like the RSPCA is properly equipt to prosecute organisations such as rodeos and intensive farms. Jeanie Walker expresses her concern that there are still 17 rodeos of evidence that the RSPCA has yet to investigate and the statute of limitations is getting dangerously close on some of them.

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Today Tonight8 May 2006

Today Tonight producer calls on Graham Gunn to apologise to Janet Allan after Will Watson pleads guilty to assaulting her in Clare Magistrates Court today. State Liberal MP, Graham Gunn made comments in parliament in reference to 56 year old Janet Allan being assaulted at Marrabel Bull Ride by 21 year old Will Watson, a bull rider from Victoria. Mr Gunn said that 'although the woman appeared to be allergic to water, he did in fact dunk her in and out of the trough'. He also said that 'I heard that he got a considerable cheer for his actions and i'm sorry I was not there because I would have joined in the clapping'. He also referred to Jeanie Walker as a crazy extremist with no idea on reality and said that he is expressing the view of his rural constituents. He refused to apologize for his comments on Janet, or his comments in parliament that he believed the RSPCA should lose their funding for prosecuting the Marrabel Rodeo organiser for breaches to their permit conditions for welfare of animals. He referred to the RSPCA as 'nasty'.

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Channel 10 Evening News 8 May 2006

Victorian Bull Rider Will Watson has pleaded guilty in the Clare Magistrates Court for assaulting 56 year old anti rodeo protestor Janet Allan at last years Marrabel Bull Ride. The case has been adjourned until sentencing at the Adelaide Magistrates Court on August 29th. Jeanie Walker expressed her relief that Janet would finally be getting some justice and pointed out that the rural media had been giving Ms Allan a hard time. She also commented that this conviction would send a strong message that violence against people trying to film animal cruelty would not be tolerated.

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Today Tonight3 May 2006

State Liberal MP, Graham Gunn made comments in parliament in reference to 56 year old Janet Allan being assaulted at Marrabel Bull Ride by 21 year old Will Watson, a bull rider from Victoria. Mr Gunn said that 'although the woman appeared to be allergic to water, he did in fact dunk her in and out of the trough'. He also said that 'I heard that he got a considerable cheer for his actions and i'm sorry I was not there because I would have joined in the clapping'. He also referred to Jeanie Walker as a crazy extremist with no idea on reality and said that he is expressing the view of his rural constituents. He refused to apologize for his comments on Janet, or his comments in parliament that he believed the RSPCA should lose their funding for prosecuting the 2004 Marrabel Rodeo organiser for breaches to their permit conditions for welfare of animals. He referred to the RSPCA as 'nasty'.

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The Advertiser 5 April 2006

In a state first, the secretary of the Marrabel Rodeo club, Andrew Allchurch has been convicted on 2 counts of failing to comply with the Code of Practice for the Care and Treatment of Rodeo animals which is designed to prevent animal cruelty, at the Marrabel Rodeo on October 3rd 2004.

Read Article
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ABC Evening News 4 April 2006

In a state first, the secretary of the Marrabel Rodeo club, Andrew Allchurch has been convicted on 2 counts of failing to comply with the Code of Practice for the Care and Treatment of Rodeo animals which is designed to prevent animal cruelty, at the Marrabel Rodeo on October 3rd 2004. The RSPCA is also prosecuting both of the stock contractors separately.

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Channel 7 Evening News 4 April 2006

In a state first, the secretary of the Marrabel Rodeo club, Andrew Allchurch has been convicted on 2 counts of failing to comply with the Code of Practice for the Care and Treatment of Rodeo animals at the Marrabel Rodeo on October 3rd 2004. The RSPCA hopes this sends a strong message that animal cruelty in rodeos will not be tolerated.

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Channel 10 Evening News 4 April 2006

In a state first, the secretary of the Marrabel Rodeo club, Andrew Allchurch has been convicted on 2 counts of failing to comply with the Code of Practice for the Care and Treatment of Rodeo animals at the Marrabel Rodeo on October 3rd 2004.

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The Leader 15 March 2006

Rodeo Pledge
Liberal candidate Mark Osterstock has signed a pledge drafted by the No Rodeo lobby group supporting a ban on rodeo events such as calf roping and bucking. The No Rodeo group is running independent candidates in several metropolitans seats, including Newland.

Troy Walker, the No Rodeo candidate for Newland, has lost several campaign posters and some have been defaced. The Police are investigating the thefts. Police will question people seen removing posters.

Read Article
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ABC Radio 9 March 2006

Family First says animals are given to mankind to enjoy. The MacKillop candidate says animal rights activists are having a destructive influence on country life and that in some country areas, rodeos are the only form of entertainment they get.

Read Article
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ABC Radio 8 March 2006

Police investigate stolen No Rodeo campaign posters.

Read Article
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ABC Radio 8 March 2006

Major parties won't preference No Rodeo in seat of Stuart

Read Article
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ABC Radio (NT) • 7 March 2006

Response to 'No Rodeo' things "hot up down south". Read Article

Cattlemen gather in central Australia - one topic of discussion was the anti-rodeo movement. Read Article

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Whyalla News • 2 March 2006

Candidate stands against rodeos. Giles candidate Esmond Vettoretti is running an independent campaign to stop the cruelty animals experience at rodeos.

Read Article
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The Bunyip • 1 March 2006

Craig Allan caught a pair of pro-rodeo vandals taking down his election signs. Note: It is a prosecutable offence to tamper with election signage.

Read Article
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ABC Radio & Nightly News (TV) • 25 February 2006

The Democrats are introducing legislation to ban rodeos after the State election

Read more
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ABC Radio (NT) • 6 February 2006

For the first time ever, the NT Country Hour opened up the ABC phone lines today to call for listener feedback to the national rodeo debate. An 'old stockman from way back' calls and says he doesn't like cruelty to animals. Read Article

Most people surveyed in the street can see some merit in the argument that the sport is a little cruel. Read Article

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ABC Rural Radio 629 8 February 2006
ABC North & West Morning Program with Roger Taylor

Over the past week several rodeo organisers as well as Graham Gunn the Member for Stuart and Justin Jarvis, the Labor candidate for Stuart have accused Jeanie Walker of lying about what she has seen and filmed at recent South Australian rodeos. Now Simon Cook is contesting Graham Gunn in the upcoming election and clarified a few points. Jim Willoughby enters the debate again, this time accusing Jeanie of falsifying video.

Complete transcript
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Media Release
Psychologists for the Promotion of Animal Welfare
6 February 2006

Psychologists are concerned rodeos are being promoted as family entertainment and point out the research which correlates cruelty to animals and other violent and criminal behaviour.

Read Media Release
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ABC Rural News Online 6 February 2006

Debate is raging over the future of rodeos in South Australia, with animal activists ramping up a campaign to ban the sport. Jeanie Walker, who leads the "Say No to Rodeo" campaign, is accusing operators of cruelty and not complying with RSPCA standards.

Read report
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ABC Rural Radio 629 3 February 2006
Report: Luke Fitzgerald

Jeanie Walker says rodeos are not complying with the RSPCA standards. While not wanting to ban rodeos - wholesale - she says events with bucking horses and bulls, plus calf wrestling and roping, are inhumane. Ms Walker also says that rodeo organisers are preventing people from seeing the truth, even refusing entry to anti-rodeo activists - Mr Spaeth, committee member of Wilmington Rodeo denies they are trying to hide the truth.

Read summary of report
Complete transcript
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Stock Journal 2 February 2006
Report: Deanna Lush

Jim Willoughby and Jeanie Walker were interviewed by the Stock Journal about the current rodeo controversy in South Australia.

Read summary
J Walker's full response
J Walker's published response
'Letter of the week'
SJ Apology
Reader's anger
Letter to editor
Letter to editor
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Channel 10 Evening News 29 January 2006

At the Ulverstone rodeo in Tasmania, two weeks after a bull broke it's back at Carrick Creek, a horse broke its leg and was put down in the arena. A young steer also broke its leg in another event. Dr Hugh Wirth, the President of the RSPCA stated they were inhumane events that should be banned.

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Letter to Advertiser
from Animal Welfare League
27 January 2006

In response to the vision shown in the media over the past weeks, the Chairman of the Animal Welfare League of South Australia writes to The Advertiser to express the board's opposition of rodeos.

Read letter [PDF 10k]
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Letter to Editor
Southern Times Messenger
25 January 2006

Read letter [JPG 69k]
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Channel 10 Evening News27 December 2005

More concerns of animal cruelty at the Port Lincoln rodeo on Australia Day. Jeanie Walker demands an immediate ban of rodeos as they continue to prove they are cruel and unmanageable. Jeanie described events with horses and calves as sickening and more animals were being injured by inept competitors.

Jeanie said this rodeo once again gave ammunition that rodeos are not being run by the rules, proving they must be banned immediately. Vision aired of Port Lincoln events and the presenter warned the scenes may distress viewers.

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Victor Harbour Times 26 January 2006
Letter: 'Rodeo Concerns'

Seeing the terrible treatment of animals on Today Tonight was appalling ...

Read complete letter
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The Bunyip 18 January 2006
Reporter: Tess Fisher

The debate over whether or not rodeos should be banned continues. The Bunyip interviews Janet Allan, a local anti-rodeo advocate who was assaulted for filming at the 2004 Marrabel Bull Ride, Cec Mitchell, the organiser of the Two Wells 2005 rodeo, Jim Willoughby, President of the SA rodeo circuit and Jeanie Walker, anti-rodeo advocate, co-creator (with husband Troy) of the 'No Rodeo' in SA campaign.

Read full story [PDF 1.2mb]
Letter to editor
Letter to editor
Letter to editor
Letter to editor [25 Jan]
Letter to editor [25 Jan]
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Today Tonight [Ch 7] • 16 January 2006
Reporter: Michelle Vella

At the weekend Yankalilla 2006 rodeo patrons were given printed leaflets advising FILMING WITH VIDEO CAMERAS AT THIS EVENT IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED. Although Jeanie and Troy Walker attended with their cameras, they proceeded to film while all patrons with video cameras were harassed, warned not to film or risk having their cameras confiscated and had their view deliberately blocked.

Meanwhile at a rodeo in Tasmania a bull broke its back in a bucking event and was forced to drag itself out of the ring on two legs as no vet was in attendance to offer pain relief or humane euthanasia. Cowboys and rodeo workers kicked and punched the animal to make it drag itself onto a trailer where it was left for an hour and a half to suffer excruciating pain and mental anguish until a vet arrived. The patron who filmed this heartbreaking scene was also told not to film, however continued to do so.

Dr Harry Cooper the Channel 7 celebrity vet was appalled by this treatment and expressed his distaste of cruel rodeo events.

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Evening & Late Night News [Ch 10] • 15 January 2006

Sickening footage of a bull which broke it's back at the Carrick Creek rodeo in Tasmania last night. Paralysed it dragged its heavy body by its forelegs out of the arena. Stockmen kicked it in the head to make pull itself onto the trailer where it was left for over an hour until a vet could treat it. The horrifying footage was aired nationally on both evening and late night news bulletins. It also featured on a news break earlier in the day.

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Today Tonight [Ch 7] • 13 January 2006
Reporter: Michelle Vella

There was an enormous reaction to our story last week on cruelty at rodeos when we featured video of distressed and dying animals used in the name of sport and family entertainment. Well, it was hardly that it seems. You would have thought the cowboys taking part would have heeded t he calls to take more care and the animal welfare authorities to take a closer look at the next event, but as Michelle Vella reports, nothing seems to have changed with more incidents of animals in distress at Kadina last weekend.

"Rodeo people aren't learning from their mistakes, their continuing because the know they can," said Jeanie Walker. She also mentioned how she has received more threats since the story, but she will continue until rodeos are banned.

"The RSPCA are totally opposed to rodeos and wants to put an end to them," stated John Strachan, President of SA RSPCA.

Organisers ignore their own code of conduct about the treatment of animals, eg. Jim Willoughby the President of the SA Australian Professional Rodeo Association who judged the Kadina event, walked past a distressed horse several times whilst it reared, smashed about and tried to dig its way out of the chute for 25 minutes. Also bulls were having their tails pulled while being released from the chutes.

69% of viewers called for a ban on rodeos

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Southern Times11 January 2006

RSPCA to attend the Yankalilla rodeo organised by the Rotary Club to supervise, amid concerns of the death of the horse at Two Wells.

Read full story
Letter to editor

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Bendigo Advertiser 9 January 2006
Reporter: Rachel Brown

Disgruntled rodeo fans described Bendigo's attempt to host the largest professional indoor rodeo a disaster. It was unsafe and more than 1000 spectators stormed out.

Read full story
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Radio 5AA5 January 2006
Host: Graeme Goodings

Rodeo cruelty was a hot topic of Graeme's program. Several listeners were outraged/upset with the vision shown on Today Tonight the evening prior. Graeme Goodings agreed that rodeos were cruel having seen the footage himself and was obviously disgusted with Mary, an elderly caller, who commented, "that woman got what she deserved" when referring to Janet Allan who was assaulted at Marrabel for filming cruelty.

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The Bunyip 5 January 2006

Two Wells rodeo organiser claims rodeo was a success, despite the death of a horse, according to him,"That is part of anything like this".

Read full story
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Today Tonight [Ch 7] • 4 January 2006
Reporter: Michelle Vella

Jeanie and Troy Walker have been attending South Australian rodeos over the past year and documented prolific cruelty.

At the Two Wells 2005 event held new years eve, a horse broke its leg and struggled in the ring in full view of everyone until the organisers shielded the agonising site with a large tarpaulin. The Robe 2006 was no better.

A montage of cruelty taken from each event attended by the Walkers was graphic and sickening. Proof that rodeos are indisputably cruel.

Jeanie expressed her exasperation of the lack of response by authorities to accept this undeniable evidence and act. The RSPCA are reluctant to investigate and prosecute; the Police are not interested; and the Minister for Animal Welfare, John Hill is apathetic. Only one rodeo is being prosecuted (Marrabel 2004) for cruelty, yet they were allowed to hold their next annual event, Marrabel 2005. Even though the Walkers caught more cruelty breaches at that event, the RSPCA let them off with a 'warning letter'.

Today Tonight called for a poll to vote whether viewers believe rodeos should be banned and advised distressed viewers to write to Minister Hill to act.

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The Bunyip 4 January 2006
Reporter: Tess Fisher

Two Wells rodeo organiser professes the new years eve rodeo was "a good rodeo" and "great family event", despite spectators (including children) having witnessed a horse thrash around in agony with a broken leg, ten cowboys jump all over her to restrain her, all the while commentators cracked jokes. He confirmed, “unfortunately we did have a horse that had to be put down. That’s part of anything like this – like farming.”

Read full story
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The Bunyip 21 December 2005

Mallala Council to deliberate whether they will allow the upcoming Two Wells rodeo to proceed the following year.

Read full story
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Channel 10 Evening News19 December 2005

Will Watson the Victorian bull rider who assaulted Janet Allan did not appear at Tanunda Court to face charges. A warrant for his arrest was then issued.

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The Southern Times Messenger13 December 2005

Sandra Kank wants to introduce legislation to ban rodeos. The RSPCA has made a submission calling for a ban in the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act review. Yankalilla rodeo organiser says rodeos are 'controlled' events in line with regulations set out by law.

Read full story
Related letter to editor
J Walker's clarification

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The Bunyip 7 December 2005

Two Wells rodeo resurrected by new young committee.

Read story
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Sunday Mail 13 November 2005

Jeanie & Troy Walker announce they are contesting the upcoming State elections as 'No Rodeo' independents.

Read story
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Port Pirie Recorder 13 October 2005

A visitor from Adelaide witnessed bulls being charged with electric prodders, a girl being trampled in the arena and animals thrashing about in the chutes at the Baroota rodeo.

Read full story & organiser's letter to Advertiser
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Channel 7 Adelaide Evening News 9 October 2005
Reporter: Mike Smithson

Anti-rodeo campaigners were outraged that more animal cruelty regulations were broken at the Baroota rodeo in the mid north last night, saying there were further breaches to the animal welfare code and public safety was at risk.

Jeanie Walker is the thorn in the side of any rodeo organiser. She has already taken issue with the famous Marrabel event which is in Clare court tomorrow on cruelty charges. Mrs Walker attended the rodeo where further breaches took place, including electric shock treatment to bulls. But the most blatant offence was calf roping where young animals were felled with a sharp jerk to the neck. [Vision of a little calf, lassoed and jerked high in the air and hard onto its back then close up of its eyes wide in terror.]

She also raised occupational health & safety concerns as a young bull opened a fence and the announcer made several comments to spectators to keep away from it. And a female rider fell heavily when a bull was stirred into a frenzy.

The RSPCA admitted their inspectors did not attend the event, but they did concede that it does raise fresh concerns.

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ABC TV 'Stateline' 30 September 2005
Reporter: Paul McCarthy

This weekend the 66th annual Marrabel rodeo will be held in the State's north, but will it be the last? With the State Government reviewing animal cruelty laws, animal rights activists and the RSPCA are campaigning strongly for all rodeos to be banned.

For nearly 70 years the Marrabel rodeo has been a popular fixture of the country calendar. Locals say it is the life blood of their small country town. But behind the costumes and the clowns, animal activists say there is a far different story. More blood sport than life blood. Jeanie Walker has launched a personal campaign to take on the State's rodeos, starting with Marrabel. Last year she took her handicam along ...

View Complete Transcript.
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'The Bunyip' Gawler newspaper 28 September 2005

Animal activists are voicing their concerns after the state minister for animal welfare, John Hill, granted a permit for this weekend's Marrabel Rodeo.

Read full story and a readers response.
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The Advertiser September 2005

Rex Jory questions the relevance of rodeos in today's society.

Read story
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Channel 7 Adelaide Evening News8 August 2005

The organiser of the Marrabel 2004 rodeo was granted a temporary reprieve from Clare Court today. The new court date is set for 10 October which is 8 days after the next scheduled Marrabel rodeo.

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Channel 10 Evening News9 May 2005
Reporter: Louise Gorman

Rodeo organiser charged over alleged acts of animal cruelty committed at the Marrabel rodeo six months ago. It's the first time a rodeo has been prosecuted and the RSPCA now has other events in its sights.

Warning some viewers might find the footage in this story disturbing: Scenes of the attack on Janet Allan at Marrabel Bull Ride and excessive electric prod use on bulls faces and anuses and a bull frantically trying to escape a chute causing itself injury at the Marrabel 2004 rodeo .

Andrew Patrick Allchurch, the rodeo organiser was due to make his first appearance at the Clare courthouse this morning, however the 36yo didn't show and his lawyer asked for the matter to be adjourned for two months. RSPCA is now considering laying charges against two other South Australian rodeos with a third warned.

Jeanie Walker says it doesn't go far enough, "if the government is serious about tackling animal cruelty, they need to ban rodeos it's the only way that the cruelty is going to stop".

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Today Tonight [Ch 7] • 14 March 2005
Reporter: Catherine Kennedy

Further rodeo violence and aggression at a rodeo event. This time a petite 55yo woman was the victim.

Cowboy Will Watson, a competitor, viciously grabbed, kicked and threw Janet Allan into a water trough at the Marrabel Bull Ride because she tried filming animal abuse. Onlookers captured the assault on video. Janet was interviewed; still clearly traumatised and revealed shocking bruises from the assault two weeks earlier.

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Today Tonight [Ch 7] • 9 February 2005
Reporter Catherine Kennedy

Jeanie and Troy Walker express concerns of extreme animal abuse they filmed at recent South Australian rodeos.

The RSPCA [SA] President, John Strachan was also unimpressed, "the animals are being used and exploited for the enjoyment of human beings," Mr Strachan said.

Jim Willoughby President of SA Rodeo Circuit admitted "there will be some prosecutions about Marrabel (rodeo where), there were hot shots used in excess."

The stock contractor, Noel Fraser who supplied the animals for the Marrabel rodeo said, "we treat our animals like we treat our kids. My wife says I treat them better than I treat her." When questioned about the excessive use of electric prods, Mr Fraser said,"now if that bull don't go in there, do you know what I've got to do with him? ... Go and have his head cut off!"

Jeanie Walker: "Imagine the outrage if a cattle prod was used on a cat or a dog ... my dog jumps up on you, so I just get out the cattle prod and stab the dog ... people would be outraged and they'd expect me to be prosecuted."

John Strachan [RSPCA]: "Any entertainment using animals is something we are very worried about and our policy is clear, we are opposed to rodeos."

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Channel 10 Breaking News6 October 2004
Reporter: Luke Waters

The RSPCA is investigating allegations of cruel and inappropriate treatment of animals at last weekend's Marrabel rodeo. Jeanie and Troy Walker attended and were far from impressed with what they saw and recorded.

Jeanie Walker: "What I actually found was a lot worse than what I could possibly imagine. It was shocking and it was blatant. It was very obvious there was a lot of it going on."

The RSPCA also attended and are seeking legal advice to prosecute the rodeo organisers. An RSPCA spokesperson, Emily Vatkovic announced,"our inspectors were extremely concerned with the animal's welfare yesterday and are taking it further."

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News from Interstate Incidents
TEN News • 29 Jan 05
Horse & steer break legs at Ulverstone rodeo, Tasmania
TEN News • 15 Jan 05
Bull breaks its back at Tasmanian rodeo
Bendigo Advertiser • 9 Jan 06 Largest professional rodeo a disaster


17 January, 2007