Thief Steals Sacramento Man’s Therapy Parrot

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – A therapy parrot was taken from disabled man in downtown Sacramento. Emmert Long’s friends are still searching for the bird and hope someone comes forward with information soon.

“If I don’t have my bird, they even wonder where my bird is,” Long said. “Some people even call me the bird man.”

But it’s a nickname Long doesn’t mind. He has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair, but told CBS13 having a therapy bird makes life a little bit easier.

“It calms my nerves,” he said.

Two weeks ago, his one-year-old sun conure Samantha was stolen right off of his back. He said a man tapped him on the shoulder and told him his bird was behind him on the ground. But when he looked, he didn’t see a thing and now his bird was gone.

“I think that person is lacking in some fundamental aspect of being a human,” said Dana Strome, the owner of Parrot Planet. “[Emmert] is a remarkable person for what he’s had to deal with in his life.”

Working as a physician’s assistant in the emergency room, Strome learned how important a therapy bird could be in a life-threatening situation.

“[Samantha] could alert to when he was having seizures,” she said.

When Strome heard the bird had been taken, she turned to a similar therapy parrot, hoping to fill the sudden void in Emmert’s life.

The new bird is only four months old and still has more training ahead. While he and Emmert are still getting to know each other, Emmert said the bond has already begun to form; and he wanted to make sure this bird had a part of him.

“I’m not sure but I think I’m going to name it Ted,” he said. “Ted is my middle name.”

Emmert says he’s still in the process of filing a police report. Samantha is a bright parrot, small, very colorful and very loud. If you see the bird, you can call Parrot Planet at 916-594-9290 or visit their Facebook page.

More from Macy Jenkins

One Comment

  1. Please use a harness or some other method to secure these birds – going around out in the general public with a parrot on your shoulder, flighted or unflighted, whether a “therapy bird” or not is horrible to do to the bird who can be stolen by terrible people, attacked by predatory animals, or slip off and get stepped on/rolled over by someone. If this man has limited movement this could happen again – I have 3 parrots and it is sad to think of these birds being put into harms way. This will happen again unless the bird can be secured better. Just because you call a bird a therapy parrot it doesn’t mean it has super powers and can deal with these situations and is immune to harm or death.

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