By Per Peterson
It didn’t take Dave Rialson long Wednesday morning to figure out what had happened at Fultz Farms, just northeast of Tracy, the night before.
Rialson, who has worked for Eric Fultz for a year, was first on what would later be determined a crime scene Wednesday.
“There was a pair of boots outside the barn that shouldn’t have been there,” he said. “I opened the front door and the floor was all covered with manure; the second door was wide open, and there was a pig running around.”
Rialson quickly realized about half the pigs in one of the barns were gone.
“Then I called Eric (Fultz),” he said.
Authorities say some 90 feeder pigs, weighing about 30 pounds, were taken overnight on Tuesday from Fultz Farms. The animals have a total value of more than $5,700.
“There were some gates just outside the door open, the utility room had been walked into, there was manure all over the floor, the door going into the barn was open,” Fultz said.
Fultz also said there were tracks in the snow indicating a large trailer was used in the heist. He said he’s never seen a theft of pigs of this scale before.
“First time it’s happened, it’s too bad,” Fultz said. “Sometimes one or two will slip way and you never know, but this is quite obvious.”
Rialson usually gets to the farm between 8-8:15 a.m.. He said about 7,000 pigs are housed in the six barns. He said he has no idea why someone would stoop to the level of stealing pigs.
“Just sickening,” he said, “that somebody would come onto somebody’s property and do that,” he said. “It’s ridiculous. It’s somebody’s property. Why?”
Anyone with information about the theft is asked to contact the Redwood County Sheriff’s Office at 507-637-4007.