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Update: Actor James Cromwell and the other activists who protested SeaWorld’s “Orca Encounter” show on “Boycott SeaWorld” Day have been charged with trespassing.

These charges come after SeaWorld’s petty move to seek a restraining order against a PETA vice president and two of the organization’s supporters who were roughed up by the San Diego park’s head of security in July.

The same day that Cromwell led a PETA protest at SeaWorld, 3-month-old baby orca Kyara died in a tank—and her grandmother’s death followed only weeks later. Unless the orcas at SeaWorld are released into seaside sanctuaries, they’ll continue to suffer and die prematurely, so kind people will continue to protest.

Originally published July 24, 2017:

Armed with a megaphone and wearing a shirt proclaiming, “SeaWorld Sucks,” Academy Award nominee James Cromwell led a group of PETA supporters in a takeover of SeaWorld’s “Orca Encounter” show. He informed the audience about the company’s history of premature orca deaths. After peacefully informing the audience about the company’s history of premature orca deaths, the actor was detained and cited for trespassing.

 

“Orcas deserve a full life in the ocean, not a life sentence of swimming endless circles until they drop dead from disease,” says Cromwell. “My friends at PETA and I want SeaWorld to move these intelligent animals to seaside sanctuaries without delay.”

Three of the six PETA members arrested alongside Cromwell in the peaceful protest pressed assault charges against the company’s head of security in San Diego after being attacked by SeaWorld’s head of security—who was in civilian clothes and didn’t identify himself—and while the activists sat respectfully. The officer went person to person and tried to wrestle phones out of their hands, threw two protesters to the ground and put his leg on them, bent their hands and limbs roughly backward, sat on them, and put his knee on one woman’s chest until she yelled that she couldn’t breathe.

Being the head of security for a failing business may be frustrating, but physically attacking peaceful PETA protesters who want only to plead for the release of the animals at SeaWorld is inexcusable conduct. With the company’s long list of orca deaths, we thank Cromwell for his big heart in calling out SeaWorld as a horror show.

While orcas in the wild work cooperatively with their family members to find food and traverse up to 100 miles of ocean every day, those at SeaWorld are housed in incompatible groups inside tiny tanks and have even been given the drug diazepam to manage stress-induced aggressive behavior.

Forty orcas have dropped dead on SeaWorld’s watch, and not one of them died at an old age. This summer, PETA is calling on everyone to stay away from SeaWorld until the company agrees to retire the surviving orcas to sea sanctuaries.

What You Can Do

In addition to boycotting the abusement park, you can do more to help marine mammals imprisoned at SeaWorld. Click the button below to ask the company to end all animal acts at its parks and release the animals it holds captive into seaside sanctuaries.

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