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Multiple animals speared by blow darts, investigation launched

(WCTV)
Published: Feb. 21, 2019 at 11:00 PM EST
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By: Katie Kaplan | WCTV Eyewitness News

February 21, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- A criminal investigation is underway after animals were found injured off of Halstead Boulevard in the Killearn area of Tallahassee. Animal advocates say they believe the acts are intentional.

The pond just a couple of steps away from the WCTV station could be the scene of something criminal. The ladies of 'It's Meow or Never for Ferals' animal rescue said they received a call earlier this month about a suffering cat in the area.

"She had a cat that had some kind of metal sticking out if its side," said Joann Hulls, the president of IMON.

Phyllis Williamson, a board member of the group, responded to the call and spent around nine days trying to catch the stray.

"It was very scared and it suffered for quite a while before we were able to catch the cat," she said.

They finally were able to trap the cat and brought it to the vet for treatment, where it underwent surgery and had a five-inch-long metal blow dart removed.

The organization posted about the incident to its Facebook page, and that is when something even more alarming came to light.

"Popped up a picture with a duck that had the same type of metal dart in its eye," Hulls said.

Steven Wright with the Saint Francis Wildlife Association said the incident involving the duck happened the day after Christmas.

"I responded to the call and there was a blow dart that was through the skull of the duck," Wright recalled.

After surgery and several weeks of recovery, the duck is expected to survive. But, it will never be the same.

"She won't be able to see from her right eye," Wright said. "It definitely was a close call."

Williamson said she's worried, both for animals and people.

"I just couldn't imagine who would do this to an animal and then I thought about how so many other things start by an individual that has this propensity to do these types of things," she said.

Williamson said she's filed a report with the Leon County Sheriff's Office, which is now officially investigating. Anyone with information is asked to call LCSO at 574-TIPS (8477).

If you find injured wildlife, you can call Saint Francis at the following numbers: 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m.: 850-627-4151. After hours: 850-933-2735.