Appeals failed, Ferdin jailed
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, September 2003:
LOS ANGELES–Actress Pam Ferdin, 41, on July 16 began
serving a 30-day jail sentence in Los Angeles, California, after
exhausting her appeals of a January 2000 conviction for allegedly
possessing a weapon while on a picket line.
What Ferdin actually had, everyone on either side of the
case agreed, was an ankus, or “bull hook,” used by elephant
handlers. Ferdin displayed it as a prop during an August 1999
demonstration against a San Fernando Valley performance of the Circus
Vargas–and ran afoul of a 1978 ordinance that was passed to curtail
violence during labor disputes. Ferdin fought the charge as an
alleged infringement of her right to free speech.
Ferdin’s husband, surgeon and noted animal advocate Jerry
Vlasek, M.D., on July 18 said she had begun a hunger strike. Both
Ferdin and Vlasek have conducted previous hunger strikes after
arrests in connection with protest.
Ferdin debuted as a child actress in 1964 and worked steadily
in both screen and voice roles through 1979. She continues to do
occasional voice roles, but has focused on a nursing career and
animal advocacy since circa 1990.
A brief but influential Ferdin performance was her 1973 role
in the animated feature Charlotte’s Web as the farm girl Fern, who
pleads with her father to spare the life of the runt piglet she has
raised by hand.