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School chicken thief fined after Facebook post
4:37pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 in News
A DRUNKEN robber was left with egg on his face after being fined for stealing a primary school’s pet chicken.
Anthony Campen, 29, from Chelmsford, was ordered to pay £135 compensation and £85 costs after admitting taking the animal from The Bishops' Church of England and Roman Catholic Primary School.
Pupils from the school in Beardsley Drive, Springfield, had been looking after the chicken named Olympia since she hatched last year.
Campen, who was handed the fine at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court, was caught after uploading images of him with Olympia onto his Facebook profile page on January 28.
He also took the bird to a party before releasing her into a field.
An appeal has been put out by the school to find the chicken who is still missing with headteacher Greg Waters said the incident did cause some upset with his pupils.
Mr Waters said: “"We as adults might think of this as a joke, but for the children who have cared for her it was a real shock.
“We still don't know where Olympia is but expect she has been taken by a fox.”
Speaking after the fine was given to Campen, officers from Essex Police said the chicken is “unlikely” to be found.
A spokesman said: “Essex Police are pleased that Campen has admitted this offence and that he has been ordered to pay compensation.
“This chicken had originally belonged to a primary school in Chelmsford and the loss of the bird caused great distress to the children.
“The chicken has never been found and it is highly unlikely it would have survived in the wild.
“Campen's actions were totally unacceptable and we hope he thinks long and hard about the upset and distress his loutish behaviour has caused.”
Another chicken, called Pandora, is still at the school.