Case Snapshot
Case ID: 12404
Classification: Mutilation/Torture
Animal: chicken, goat
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Tuesday, Oct 9, 2007

County: Los Angeles

Disposition: Open
Case Images: 5 files available

Suspect(s) Unknown - We need your help!

Several bags containing three decapitated goats, headless chickens and rotting fruit with maggots were found dumped at the top of Hadley Street on Tuesday.

City public works and Los Angeles County Animal Care and Control employees removed the carcasses and trash Tuesday morning. Residents said the material had been left there most likely since the weekend.

"It was terrible," said Armando Morales of Whittier, who discovered the animal parts and trash behind the brush at the end of the street Monday morning.

"All of the heads were cut off," said Morales, a kick boxer who was running with Joe Butanda of Rosemead. "Maybe it was a cult or something. Why cut the heads off?"

Whittier police and county animal-control officials said the dumping is under investigation, but were pessimistic they would find who did it.

"At this point we can't link it to anyone," said Brenda Sanchez, spokeswoman for the county Animal Care and Control Department. "At this point it's just a dumping site. We don't have any leads."

Sanchez said she also doesn't know about the motive.

"Sometimes those can be linked to witchcraft or Santeria," she said. "It's really hard to know unless you have a specialist on witchcraft or Santeria."

The county does not, she said.

Whittier police Officer Diana Salazar said several calls came in Monday morning and were forwarded that day to the county Animal Care and Control Department.

Whittier has a contract with the county to provide animal-control services.

Apparently between Monday morning and the evening, someone moved the carcasses and trash from behind the brush to the street. A white sign with the words, "animal control," and an arrow pointing to the brush was staked into the ground.

Teri Salazar, who lives nearby on Elmquist Avenue, saw the dead animals Monday night and was horrified.

"It's beyond belief and despicable," Salazar said. "People are going to be sick to their stomach."

Sanchez said she's not sure why it took so long for the carcasses to be removed.

She said City Hall didn't notify the county until 3 p.m. Monday.

"We did go and pick it up this morning within 24 hours as our policy requires," she said.

Sanchez said she isn't sure why the remains weren't removed Monday, but the fact that Monday was Columbus Day, a holiday, could have been the reason.

Mario Ramos, an animal-control officer who removed the dead animals Tuesday, said he only found out because of a tip from a resident early Tuesday morning while he was removing a dead possum.

Stephanie Bell, senior cruelty case worker for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said she is horrified by the killings.

"As long as these perpetrators are at large, they pose a continual threat to the community," she said.

References

  • Whittier Daily News - Oct 9, 2007

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