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TEXARKANA -- Animal-welfare advocates are pressuring Texarkana officials to stop a coming circus performance, but the show is likely to go on.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals on Thursday sent a letter to Texarkana Mayor Allen Brown asking him to crack down on Jordan World Circus, a traditional three-ring show featuring tigers and elephants scheduled for today at Four States Fairgrounds.

In a statement, PETA claimed the circus will violate a city ordinance against keeping wild animals and said it has "repeatedly alerted local law-enforcement officials to the circus's plans to flout the law."

The group refers to an ordinance that prohibits possession of certain "innately wild animals," including tigers, in the city limits. But that is not the whole story, the city's animal services director said Friday.

"They're picking and choosing," Charles Lokey said, pointing out a separate ordinance that allows wild animals kept for exhibition purposes by circuses, zoos and educational institutions.

Lokey and other animal control officers today will inspect the circus animals, ensure they pose no risk to public safety and check that the show has all the Department of Agriculture paperwork required to keep them, he said. If the officers discover any violations, they will notify the appropriate authorities.

Because Jordan World Circus is under constant scrutiny by PETA and other animal-rights activists, Lokey expects everything to be in order.

"I don't anticipate any problems," he said.

With the motto, "Animals are not ours to experiment on, eat, wear, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way," PETA said it takes an uncompromising position against all animal acts.

The group calls Jordan World Circus "notorious" and publishes a three-page document detailing animal-abuse allegations against the show dating to 1993.

Metro on 02/18/2019

Print Headline: PETA opposes circus visit to Arkansas, cites city law

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