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Burnt Steer Fund launched to raise reward 

An account has been set up at Heritage Oaks Bank to raise funds to increase the reward for information leading to arrest and conviction of the persons responsible for the attack on an FFA steer.

Last Friday night or Saturday morning a student’s FFA steer named Panda was reportedly doused with lighter fluid and burned. There is currently a cash reward of 2,000 for anyone who helps with information leading to an arrest and conviction. Informants can remain anonymous.

burnt FFA steer

Panda the injured FFA steer.      Photo from Pioneer Ag Resources.

“Panda was being fitted to be shown next summer at the Mid State Fair but those plans are now on hold pending Panda’s recovery from this despicable act of animal cruelty,” says the Pioneer Ag Resources on its website.

“Panda was most severely burned on his face and around his eyes but he also sustained severe burns over his shoulders and down his backline. Several veterinarians have come to the rescue to provide some pain relief for Panda and treatment to aid in his recovery.  We will all be looking for them at the fair in July.”

“To help apprehend and stop the criminals who committed this heinous crime our community is coming together and has joined forces with the Paso Robles Police Department and Heritage Oaks Bank. Through this effort we created the Burnt Steer Fund.  Money donated to the Burnt Steer Fund will be used as reward to catch the person or persons who callously set this poor steer on fire for their own sadistic entertainment. Portions of the fund will also be used to aid and enhance the learning endeavors of the agriculture and FFA students at Paso Robles High School.” Pioneer Ag Resources could not be reached by phone Thursday morning.

The community group has established an account at Heritage Oaks Bank, according to Paso Robles Police Lt. Tim Murphy, for people wishing to contribute money to enhance the reward fund in an effort to identify the person or persons responsible for this crime.

Donations can be made to the ‘Burnt Steer Fund account’ at any Heritage Oaks Bank or via mail to:

Burnt Steer Fund
c/o Heritage Oaks Bank
400 South River Road, Paso Robles, California 93446

Additional information can be found at

Original story published Oct. 28, 2013:

Police investigate animal cruelty at high school

5-month old steer suffers burn injuries

cow burned at high schoolOn Saturday morning at about 8:05 a.m. the Paso Robles Police Department received a report of animal cruelty at the agriculture barn at the Paso Robles High School.

The reporting party stated his juvenile son is a student at the high school and member of the National FFA Organization. As part of this program, his son houses his 5-month old steer at the agriculture barn. The reporting party went to the barn to feed the animal and found that it had been burned. The animal suffered significant burn injuries but is expected to survive.

It appears that the unknown suspect(s) entered the barn sometime between 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 25 and 8 a.m. the next day and set fire to the animal for unknown reasons.

Officers located evidence at the scene which is being analyzed as part of this investigation. Personnel from the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office Rural Crimes Unit and San Luis Obispo County Division of Animal Services, along with staff from the Paso Robles Joint Unified School District, assisted with this investigation.

The Paso Robles Police Department is seeking assistance from the public to help solve this crime. If you have any information about this crime or any persons involved, you are urged to call Crime Stoppers at (805) 549-7867 or submit a Web Tip from the Crime Stoppers website at You can also submit a “TEXT TIP” by texting “slotips” and your message to CRIMES (or 274637). You do not have to give your name. Crime Stoppers will pay a cash reward of up to $2,000 for information leading to arrest and conviction, and you can remain anonymous.



About the author: Publisher Scott Brennan

Scott Brennan is the publisher of this newspaper and founder of Access Publishing. Follow him on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, or follow his blog.