NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – Although as many as four decapitated Canada geese were reportedly found in Huguenot Park near the New Rochelle High School, city officials have refuted the report, claiming just one goose was found dead, the result of an animal attack.
On Thursday afternoon, a woman reported to police that she was walking her dog in the park when she came upon the geese, lined up along the path. A subsequent investigation by the New Rochelle Police Department and Westchester SPCA found just one goose, whose body had been mangled by an animal.
In a statement, the city said that a Parks and Recreation crew found the goose near the main causeway. The photo provided to the police by the woman reporting the incident only showed one goose.
“The carcass was mangled with teeth marks, so the goose appeared to have been killed by another animal,” they said. “There was no evidence of multiple dead and decapitated geese. A subsequent investigation by the New Rochelle Police Department likewise found no further evidence as well.”
Kiley Blackman, the founder of Westchester4Geese, said that the city mishandled the investigation, and it should have been taken over by the SPCA.
“I’m extremely dismayed that New Rochelle disposed of the body, which is evidence,” she said. “It’s not up to them to make the determination on how that goose died. This was called in as a cruelty report and they should have turned the body over to the SPCA.”
“The Parks Department is not composed of doctors or veterinarians, and frankly, their ‘determination of bites’ is suspect anyway, as a goose is covered with heavy feathers. In any case, they circumvented proper procedure, which has seriously hampered this case and they urgently need retraining so this does not happen again.”
Officials from the Parks Department could not be reached late on Friday afternoon.