The cries of lambs and goats going to slaughter is not what those attending a large flea market expected to hear. It's a clash of atmosphere and culture on the same section of rented land near 192nd Street and West Dodge Road in Omaha.
A weekend flea market drew 4,000 people of all ages, but a neighbor’s rented goat corral wasn’t a petting zoo. “We're Muslims and we slaughter our meat in a Halal manner, meaning we slice the throat."
Abdul Jami and his brother slaughter goats to feed their extended family of about 100 people. “We don't need a permit according to Nebraska law as long as we're slaughtering these animals for our own meat."
The flea market operator and a vendor who declined to be interviewed complained to the landlord about a slaughter operation close to customers. Was he surprised what was going on? “Yes, I was.”
Fact Finders got a tip that a dead goat had been spotted in a pasture near the barn and we called the Humane Society. “This is the first time this has ever happened,” said Jami. “Yeah, I think this is sabotage.”
“No, that would be really hard to say that someone did this on purpose until we had more evidence of that,” said Nebraska Humane Society investigator Christy Biodrowski.
The flea market operator said nobody she knows would stoop to planting a dead goat.
The Humane Society took the goat carcass to a veterinarian, who found the goat died of natural causes. The Humane Society investigator didn't find any violations in the way the animals are treated.
Fact Finders asked the Douglas County Health Department to look into the lamb and goat slaughter operation. Department spokesman Phil Rooney said there is nothing in the food code to prohibit it as long as it’s for family use only.