Kansas woman fights to keep state fair champion lamb title

A Kansas State University student’s market lamb was disqualified for “unethical fitting.”

Published on May 26, 2017 10:09AM

WASHINGTON, Kan. (AP) — A northern Kansas woman is fighting a decision by state fair officials to strip her champion lamb title and winnings because of alleged performance enhancement.

Kansas State University student Gabryelle Gilliam’s market lamb was crowned grand champion at the Kansas State Fair in September, the Hutchinson News reported. But in January, Gilliam was officially disqualified for “unethical fitting.”

The Kansas Department of Agriculture’s Dr. Paul Grosdidier said he concluded after a carcass exam soon after the fair that a natural substance was injected into the animal “within a few days” of inspection. State fair rules prohibit treating animals with a substance to alter its body in any way.

Gilliam alleged in Reno County District Court documents that the fair’s actions weren’t supported by substantial evidence and the officials acted beyond their jurisdiction. She said she wants the disqualification overturned.

Gilliam’s father, Jerry Gilliam, told fair officials that neither he nor his family members injected the lamb, and that they were with the animal throughout the duration of the fair. Disqualification for Gilliam means losing the grand champion award, which the fair’s website says is $4,000 for the 2017 champion.

The Kansas Attorney General’s office is seeking until June 21 to respond to Gilliam’s complaint.

State fair general manager Susan Sankey said the fair has adopted the National Show Ring Code of Ethics.


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