They say no act of kindness goes unpunished. That is particularly true when government bureaucracy steps in.
A New Jersey woman who found two baby squirrels abandoned by their mother on her property is in hot water after nursing and caring for the critters.
Maria Vaccarella of Howell told WPVI that last year she rendered aid to a squirrel that had fallen out a tree and then gave birth.
She said she left the newborns in a cage overnight but the mother failed to come back for them.
Vaccarella decided to take in the two squirrels she named George and Lola, and bottle fed them and took care of them for four months because the registered wildlife rehabilitators she contacted said they couldn’t take them in.
The Vaccarella family posted pictures and videos of the squirrels and their progress to Facebook as they took care of them in preparations to eventually release them back to the wild, WPVI reported.
That is until Halloween when the Division of Fish and Wildlife came to their home to inquire about the squirrels.
“They said they saw a picture on Facebook and asked me if I had squirrels. I said yes. I had no problem telling them the story. I was proud,” she told WPVI.
“They said I could not have them, that they had to be rehabilitated. I complied. I said no problem,” Vaccarella said adding that she gave the officers the cage too.
However a few days after the encounter with the officers she received a ticket in the mail for $500.
She said when she went to court she was told the fine could be up to $1,000 and six months in jail.
“Wasting taxpayer to go to court over helping two squirrels? It doesn’t make sense,” she told WPVI.
Vaccarella is due back in court on January 27.
Watch the report below.
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