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Harassment charge dropped against animal sanctuary owner who hosted calf stolen from Baltimore County farm

Prosecutors on Tuesday dropped a criminal charge of harassment against a man who kept a calf stolen from a Baltimore County farm on his animal sanctuary in Virginia, according to online court records.

Ryan Phillips, who owns Life with Pigs, an animal sanctuary near Williamsburg, was charged with harassing Scott Braglio, a farmer in Baltimore County.

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Earlier this month, one woman pleaded guilty to stealing a calf from Braglio Farms in April and transporting it to the Life with Pigs sanctuary.

Phillips has maintained he did not know the calf was stolen. The calf was returned to Braglio Farms by Baltimore County Police.

Phillips accused Braglio of making threatening statements to him over the phone, and Braglio accused Phillips of harassing him and damaging his business reputation. A criminal charge against Braglio in Virgina was dropped earlier this year.

Baltimore County Deputy State’s Attorney John Cox said there was insufficient evidence to try the case, and that the information provided to prosecutors showed that “all this activity” was happening, but there wasn’t evidence tying it directly to Phillips.

Phillips and other animal rights activists alleged that the calf was being abused or neglected at Braglio Farms when it was picked up and taken to the animal sanctuary. Baltimore County Police have said there was no evidence of abuse or neglect when they investigated the farm.

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