Cat beheaded and severed skull left in children’s playground next to climbing frame in ‘deliberate’ grisly act
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A cat was beheaded and its severed skull left in a children’s playground next to a climbing frame, sparking an investigation by the RSPCA. The dismembered head was placed carefully at the bottom of a popular kid’s apparatus in Hackney, east London, last Monday (April 24).
RSPCA investigators believe this means it was deliberately placed on the park ground facing upwards. A staff member at Homerton Grove Adventure Playground made the gruesome discovery as she was opening up the park for the afternoon.
As the body of the animal has not yet been found, it is not known if the feline was deliberately killed. But the RSPCA inspector at the scene said the "first impression of the scene was that it appeared to be deliberate”.
The pet’s owner has also not been identified, a spokeswoman for the RSPCA added. Investigators at the animal charity branded it a shocking incident and a "uniquely disturbing situation".
Michael Harrington, an RSPCA animal rescue officer, said today (Wednesday, May3): “This is a truly horrifying story. We were alerted to the discovery of a dismembered black and white cat head at a children’s playground on Monday last week.
“The investigation is ongoing, but first impressions appear to indicate that this was a deliberate act. The head was very carefully placed at the bottom of a children’s play apparatus and left in a way that it would be easily found.
“We have been informed that this particular piece of apparatus is one of the most used and popular things in the playground. This must have been a shocking discovery for the member of staff who stumbled upon it, but we are profoundly grateful that it was not found by a small child who could have been deeply traumatised.”
It is thought the head was left at the scene between 6pm when the playground closed on April 23 and 3.30pm the next day when it opened. The RSPCA launched an appeal for information today in a bid to find out what happened to the cat.
So far investigators have been unable to get CCTV footage from the scene due to a lack of cameras in the area. Mr Harrington added: “This is a completely unthinkable act and we very much hope someone will have seen or heard something that can help us with our investigation. There is a uniquely disturbing situation and we are keen to get to the bottom of what happened here.”
Anyone with information can contact the RSPCA appeals line anonymously on 0300 123 8018.