Dallas PD's Investigating Yet Another Cat Mutilation in Northwest Dallas

Categories: Crime
hang_in_there_kitty.jpg
Last time I noted the Dallas Police Department's concerns over cat killings 'cross the city, the great Bud Kennedy of the Star-Telegram jumped in the comments and insisted, "Every 'cat mutilation' hoax nationwide has turned out to be the work of animal predators." Far as Bud's concerned, it's all the work of very precise coyotes and foxes -- no matter what police say, here or anywhere else. And, in recent years, cases have ranged far and wide, from Sacramento to Denver to Oregon to Florida.

Dallas PD heartily disagrees. Which I mention this morning only because over the weekend, an elderly neighbor of mine in Northwest Dallas found two cat legs tossed in her front yard. The Metroplex Animal Coalition got involved, Ann Margolin was notified, and officers from the Northwest Patrol Division responded this morning by collecting the pieces and taking them to the Dallas Animal Services animal-cruelty folks for a further look-see, shades of the citywide cat killings of August '09. Writes Sgt. Louis Felini, now in the NW, he assured the woman who found the cat parts that "we would do everything to find out who is responsible."

According to the police report from this weekend, "the cat legs were not mangled and appeared to have been cut by unknown cutting type instrument." DPD spokesman Senior Corporal Kevin Janse says as far as the officers are concerned for now, "a cutting instrument was definitely used. ... It's obvious when it's cut that precise. There's no way an animal can cut the legs off that cleanly."

He says no arrests have ever been made in the cases of cat mutilations, but only because "the dark of night is when they're doing it, and there's rarely any witnesses or evidence tying them to it." I also asked him about the theory floating 'round the neighborhood that this is some kind of back-to-school gang ritual: "Back in the day, we asked our gang unit if they'd ever heard of that, and they said there's never been any confirmation of that."

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58 comments
Capt. Sheffield
Capt. Sheffield

I've seen numerous articles regarding cat mutilations over the years. Most are the result of predators. Some very, VERY few are the result of disturbed individuals (usually kids). But one answer that was given to me by a British vet 30 years ago I've never seen mentioned, even though the issue occurs far more often than most people realize. When cats are out loose and find themselves caught out in the cold or chased by canines of any sort they all too often take refuge under cars and will, too frequently, crawl up in the engine. The most accessible place in a car engine for a cat to take refuge is in the fan well. This would apply to any car that has a large single fan with a protective shroud, which is most of them. The cat curls up and goes to sleep there. If the cat is not awakened by the car owners ingress or if the cat freezes upon hearing the noise of the car owner entering the vehicle they are then, all too often, in a perfect position to be sliced neatly in half when the engine starts up. Often the car owner will not even be aware that this has happened till the next time they open their engine. Almost every mechanic I know has seen this several times in their career. As the car passes along the street diced kitty parts are often deposited, picked up by other animals and then redeposited elsewhere. Hence the cases where half of Mr. Kitty was found with little or no blood or internal organs present. We found this out when one of our own cars was so caught. In our case the cat actually survived because the car owner heard a noise (very faintly) and killed the engine and checked. They found our cat, still alive, sliced wide open from shoulder to hip. This was in 1982 and the vet that managed to save his little life was a wonder worker. But he said we were incredibly lucky as most cats caught in that situation are sliced neatly in half before they even know what's hit them. I've also had one instance where I opened my own engine and found blood and guts inside. Whatever it was was too destroyed to identify and it was a mess to clean (rabbits sometimes take refuge in engine wells as well). To this day I always make noise getting into my car and beep the horn once before starting the engine and have had at least once instance where a cat came bolting out from under the car because of that. Don't know if it was actually in the engine. Glad I didn't find out the hard way.

Jake
Jake

Look at the area of the incision.  If the hair surrounding the incision has also been cut then that might be made with a man made device - such as a knife.  A talon or claw will not cut the hair, it will move it to the side. Also a talon or claw can cut the skin very cleanly.

randygibson
randygibson

There was a bobcat spotted this morning chewing on a kitty in the middle of Cox Rd.

Bud Kennedy
Bud Kennedy

Obviously there are serious animal abuse cases that clearly involved humans. But the cat-in-the-yard cases in every city traced to mostly foxes, a few coyotes.

LaceyB
LaceyB

just watch "Gummo", which should significantly gross anyone out. Then you might end up using manpower for something that helps our city. Instead of being "Pleasantville".

Bud Kennedy
Bud Kennedy

The DPD makes these announcements for political reasons. No police agency has ever traced such cases to anything but coyotes or foxes. Did anybody notice there's a drought and more predator animals are in the city, including a coyote on Lovers Lane a few weeks ago?

Montemalone
Montemalone

Next time anybody finds a pound of pot behind their house, or their old house, or their neighbor's house, call me.

Bob
Bob

I once mutilated my Cue Cat. No actually, I mutilated it several times.

Bigdtxhorn
Bigdtxhorn

Keep your dogs & cats in the house or secured in the yard.

scottindallas
scottindallas

Satan worshipers are back.  I miss the Satan worshiper hysteria, so silly--those were better days.

Daniel Hunter
Daniel Hunter

Why would you want someone to get sent to jail for marijuana anyway? It's not hurting you, it's not hurting them. The cops did exactly what they should have done: nothing. Let the cops worry about things that matter. 

Facebook User
Facebook User

I always find it interesting what the police find worthy of investigation. Three years ago I found a pound of marijuana behind my formerly unoccupied house. I observed a man using the drug stash on a regular basis. I took down his license plate number and called the police. They took the drugs and determined that the car was owned by an 18 year old who lived with his parents just down the street. The police knocked on the door and his mother claimed the drugs weren't his. Case closed. They never took a statement from me. Never asked me to look at the photo of the owner of the car to confirm it was the man who I saw using the drug stash. Nope, case closed.

Dlver
Dlver

Oh, ye who know it all.

scottindallas
scottindallas

Don't rule out the raccoon.  My college roommate's cat, "Sparky" was nearly skinned alive by raccoons that hung out on our back roof top (we lived above the San Marcos town square)  Oddly, my cat kinda hung out with the 'Coons, but "Chance" was a charmer.  But, "Sparky" could fetch like the Dickens.  I don't think a dog could out fetch that cat. 

scottindallas
scottindallas

so, those serial killer (cereal) that admit that they started out on cats (burgundy) and then hit the harder stuff later is all a hoax?  I frankly am not that worried, but those who are concerned have a reason to be. 

(In college some redneck friends I know considered getting some pound animals for a barbeque.  That may sound horrible to some, but better eat the animal than gas it and throw them in the trash.)

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

Give em hell Bud..while we're at it..Your pick for best Mex food in Ft Worth.  Northside specifically.

TG
TG

is budkennedy really making that statement above, or is it someone posing as bud kennedy to make him look bad?

i guess this story about a puppy who was skinned and dumped at the shelter is also coyotes toohttp://www.myfoxdfw.com/dpp/ne...

Save Them
Save Them

Maybe next time the cat mutilator will come after your kid or your elderly parent that you didn't keep "secured" in the house or the yard.  There are evil people in your vicinity - mutilating living beings BECAUSE THEY ENJOY IT - and this response is the best you can offer?  "Keep your cats and dogs in the house"? Get help.

M E
M E

Yeah well some kid smoking pot and not hurting anyone is one thing. Another completely different thing is to hurt and mutilate living creatures for pleasure. And what kind of person would call the cops on an 18-year-old kid for using pot? If they would've caught that kid and convicted him, he could have probably served time and ruined his chances of becoming an active member of society, just because he'd have a criminal record. And that would've been YOUR fault. 

A person that mutilates living things, whether they are cats or not, usually are severely disturbed and usually move on to hurt humans as well.

Llamalu66
Llamalu66

Yeah. Personal pot use vs cat mutilations. I know what I want the cops investigating...

Daniel Hunter
Daniel Hunter

Why would you want someone to get sent to jail for marijuana anyway? It's not hurting you, it's not hurting them. The cops did exactly what they should have done: nothing. Let the cops worry about things that matter. 

Dlver
Dlver

No, it's cattibalism.

Melinda_cook68
Melinda_cook68

It says he had chemical burns, that made it appear as if it was skinned.

M E
M E

That is absolutely horrible, poor thing. As a comment to the original story, a friend of mine was told by the SPCA, when looking to adopt a white cat, that they'd have to do an extensive evaluation before they allowed her to adopt, more so than when adopting any other animal/color. The reason being, and this is quoting the person at SPCA in SE Dallas, is because they'd been a series of cat mutilations/killings in the area, all white-colored cats, which some believed were part of some ritual, the nature of said ritual unknown, but very creepy and unsettling.

Robert Wilonsky
Robert Wilonsky

That's really Bud. He posted the same comment, more or less, on my FB page in response to the piece.

Dlver
Dlver

Some kid smoking pot happens to be against the law.  You do the crime you do the time.  Idiot.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin

how would it be the person reporting it fault, at this point pot is illegal, if said 18 y.o. chooses to possess/smoke pot, they are breaking the law and it would be their fault if they turned out to be inactive members of society

Guest
Guest

wow that's idiotic! it's illegal and it was hidden in this guys yard why would he want to possibly get caught with that shit in his yard? and fyi it's a drug

Dlver
Dlver

It happens to be AGAINST the law.  No more needs to be said.

Facebook User
Facebook User

Um, store your pot in your own house, not mine...

Lolotehe
Lolotehe

Easier to see at night, easier to catch.

rick
rick

When in God's name will someone do a story on the string of cat murders?  I keep hearing teases on the radio, but never any real investigation.  I blame JWP.

Robert Wilonsky
Robert Wilonsky

Saturday night is when the remains were discovered, around 7.

alind20308
alind20308

I live in NW Dallas and I found the top part of a mangled cat carcass in a neighbors yard early last week. Would be interested to know where in NW Dallas this story took place. I live just inside the LBJ loop barely west of Midway.

scottindallas
scottindallas

No but neither should police abuse the civil rights, and probable cause to search without cause.  The judge's decision to defer adjudication should rest with the judge, not some lege's mandatory sentencing rules.  Further, in po-dunk towns where the cop running a speed trap is the nephew of the judge that requires two futile appeals to get a case heard in a fair jurisdiction.  This becomes a legal sinkhole, that amounts to cruel and unusual punishment.  The lege also give vast seizure powers to police depts, creating perverse incentives. 

You might like this get tough policy, but there is also something called the Bill of Rights.  Unless someone is independently wealthy, often plea bargains are the only pragmatic solution.  Though those plea bargains aren't negotiable nor do the prosecutors offer full disclosure.  Maybe this is funny, but it marginalizes many for essentially nothing.  While Laura Bush kills a kid and walks away.  Maybe people should kill people and get less punishment than someone who is in the same vehicle with someone who has some pot in their pocket.

scottindallas
scottindallas

nor was I, but it was in the car, though no one had used it in the car. 

Guest
Guest

well then maybe people should do drugs?

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin

so you know from experience huh?  I aint gonna get popped for something little, bc I dont do drugs so POW!!

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin

we r talking about pot here, not an opressed group of people.  You can keep smoking all the weed you want to protest but its not going to help your cause.

Jake_V
Jake_V

small minded?  You just said follow the law no matter how stupid it is.

That's exactly how how the civil rights thing went down and women rights too...everyone just sat around and waited twiddling their thumbs so the peace was kept...and then BAM one day we have affirmative action and Susan B. Anthony dollars.  Just like that.  Amazing really.

Jake_V
Jake_V

I'll laugh when you get popped for something and it affects you for the rest of your life.  Half the shit on the books no one even knows about.  Its out of fucking control.

Its stupid, and the only diatribe I see is your response.

Dlver
Dlver

If you can't use correct English (having to use a vulgarity to get your thoughts across) who cares what you say.  It immediately speaks to your being ignorant and uneducated.

scottindallas
scottindallas

Really, it's a tenet of faith among the Catholic Church.  If you haven't reflected on that, perhaps you should.  I respect the Catholic Church, but it's doctrine and hierarchical nature are such that the Pope is infallible and all are supposed to follow his teachings. 

If you like the trappings of the church but don't like all judgment to come from on high, there's always the Episcopals.  To quibble with me on this is to fail to understand your own faith.  I know your catechism, evidently, you do not.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin

spare me your ridiculousness, its illegal, and until its not, abide by the laws, even as dumb as they may be.  And its great to see how small minded you are to lump all Catholics into your statement, like we are all cut from the same mold, thats about the stupidist shit Ive seen you post here.  You're better than that scott. 

scottindallas
scottindallas

Catholics are authoritarians, so the point holds.  The same punishment holds for simple possession, coupled with illegal searches which can't be fought in po-dunk towns without two appeals, it's hard to justify.  So, your authoritarian position has abetted the destruction of our civil liberties coupled with cruel and unusual punishment.  So glad you never broke any laws, even if you were discrete, and you'd better be glad you're career wasn't fucked by some nimrod who's stripped judges of their ability to judge.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin

save your diatribe for someon who gives a shit.  I dont care who smokes pot. That is their choice, but do it in your house or in private. dont get caught out in public when you KNOW its against the law, but hey if you choose to blantantly break the law in public, then I'll assume you probably wouldnt make a very good employee and probably dont deserve the benefit of the doubt.  Maybe his parents should have raised him better, telling him that hey, if you get popped by the law, it can affect you many years down the road.  Lastly it wasnt cavalier of me, it was the truth, and no I dont go to Jeffries' (sp) church, I more of a Catholic, thanks.

Phelps
Phelps

Ending the war on drugs is something that a wide swath of us can agree on.  Please don't conflate it with other policies and give the prohibitionists something to hang their hat on, like "It's just a stealth socialized medicine plot."

Remember, there are a lot of right-wingers like me who are ready to surrender the drug war and release the prisoners.  Don't give someone who is on the fence a bad taste about it.

scottindallas
scottindallas

Some jackass in the lege passed a law that on that young man's driving record it would state, in all Caps, for 10 years, "DRUG ARREST."  Even for possession, even if he's given deferred adjudication.  That is really a harmful policy and can destroy the earning potential of a young man for the rest of his life.  He's guilty of a class B misdemeanor at worst, but will suffer for a lifetime.  That's cruel and unusual punishment.

Now if we had national health care, if they had access to doctors and medicine for psychological needs, I might feel differently.  As is, marijuana is a legitimate treatment for manic depression, depression, psychosis and neurosis and a slew of other issues.  And, it has fewer side effects.  So, I have a hard time telling someone that some, more harmful drugs are good while another with fewer complications is worthy of a lifetime of punishment, irrespective of the judgment of the court judge. 

Mighty cavalier of you.  You go to Jeffries' Church do you?

Jake_V
Jake_V

so is stupidity and ignorance as far as I am concerned....hence we are taking you straight to jail.

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