Last teen suspect in Mr. Gobbles’ killing pleads guilty

Ottawa County
Wild turkey killed

Feathers are seen in the Waukazoo Woods neighborhood the week after neighbors say a friendly wild turkey was killed by a group of teens. (July 9, 2019)

HUDSONVILLE, Mich. (WOOD) — A third teenager has pleaded guilty in the brutal killing of a Holland area turkey known as Mr. Gobbles.

Benjamin Slenk, 18, switched his plea to guilty Thursday. He is the last of three teenagers to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge of unlawfully taking a turkey in connection to the Fourth of July attack in the Waukazoo Woods neighborhood of Park Township.

A neighbor said their daughter witnessed a group of teenagers attack Mr. Gobbles near Waukazoo and Edgewood drives, running over the bird with a car, beating it with a golf club and metal pole, and using a pellet gun against the wild turkey.

Some residents said they were not surprised to hear Mr. Gobbles had been killed because he was often aggressive. However, neighbors wanted those responsible held accountable.

Thomas Sinclair and Megan DeMeester switched their pleas to guilty last month. They’re all scheduled to be sentenced in October.

Prosecutors dismissed their case against a fourth teenager, who was charged with the same crime. It’s unclear why the misdemeanor charge was dropped.

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