Sonoma County Animal Care & Control officials seized animals belonging to Bill Tinker of Boyes Hot Springs, who planned to kill his animals ahead of a predicted “Judgment Day” on May 21, 2011. (CBS)
BOYES HOT SPRINGS (CBS 5) - On Friday night, animal control officials in Sonoma County seized three animals belonging to a man who planned to euthanize the pets ahead of Saturday's predicted "Judgment Day."
Bill Tinker of Boyes Hot Springs turned over the cockatiel, parrot and cat to Sonoma County Animal Care and Control, after word spread about his plans to put down his pets.
"I plan to put my babies to sleep when the earthquake hits Denver," said Tinker who thinks that a massive world-wide quake will signal the beginning of the end. "I don't want them to suffer."
The rapture was forecast by 89-year-old Oakland fundamentalist preacher Harold Camping and has been advertised in a series of public billboards.
Tinker expected the earthquake to hit around 5 p.m., and he was holding a yard sale Friday to spread the word.
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"On that day, there will be two billion plus people, in the world dead, because nobody's going to bury them," said Tinker. "If my animals are going to be killed by the flood, I mean by the earthquake or the earth wave that's going to come around the world, why would to keep them alive and allow them to be hurt?"
As word spread about Tinker's intentions, neighbors and outsiders tried to intervene.
"My question was, 'would you be willing to let me release them on my property and let them be free, until it happens?'" said neighbor Heidi Rutherford. "I have a really nice barn and we have a home with kittens in it, right now. So they'd be nice and warm, and fed, until the end."
Tinker told her to come back after 6 p.m. Saturday, the supposed start time of the end of the world.
Some doubt the sincerity of Tinker's claims, but the staff at a nearby veterinary clinic said he came by twice on Thursday looking for drugs to put the animals down. He was denied.
"Based on some of the comments that Mr. Tinker made, I wanted to insure the safety of the pets," said Amy Cooper, director of Sonoma County Animal Care and Control.
Cooper said they won't charge Tinker for boarding his pets.
"I think we'll let tomorrow pass," Cooper said. "The shelter is closed on Sunday and Monday and we'll also be in contact with Mr. Tinker. And if on Sunday or Monday the staff can be in contact and we'll make that happen."
(Copyright 2011 by CBSSan Francisco. All Rights Reserved.)