Thursday, November 17, 2011

Raccoon Violence in Burlington, Vermont!

UPDATE: On December 6, the Burlington Free Press reported the raccoon assailant had been caught:


The Burlington Free Press here in Burlington, Vermont is hot on the story of a shocking incident of raccoon violence at City Hall this morning.

Burlington Free Press photographer Glenn Russell
took this shot of Burlington Deputy Police
Chief Andi Higbee removing the dead
raccoon from Burlington City Hall
Thursday morning. 
As the Burlington Free Press reports, a middle-aged woman carried the carcass of a dead raccoon to City Hall, and repeatedly whacked the body of the animal against the doors of the building.

The culprit has so far eluded authorities.  And no, I'm not making any of this up.

The money comment in the Free Press account of the terrorist attack comes from Burlington Deputy Police Chief Andi Higbee:  He said he could not remember a similar incident happening in recent times.

Well, that's a relief! I'm so glad this doesn't happen often!

Imagine being in a city where people repeatedly smash dead raccoons against doors? What if the violence got more widespread?  I mean, what if people started smashing dead skunks against doors? Burlington is a lovely city, and I'd hate to see it ruined in attacks involving road kill and municipal office doors.

Higbee is pictured in the Free Press article removing the dead raccoon from the crime scene. He looks decidedly unhappy with the task, but thank goodness Burlington has a police force that is so dedicated that they are willing to remove roadkill from City Hall property.

At this point, it's unclear as to why the woman smacked the dead raccoon against the door. She reportedly mumbled something about City Hall's inability to remove injured and dead animals that had been hit by cars on city streets.

Reaction to the raccoon attack has been fast and furious, as social media lights up about the tragic incident. One writer took the Free Press to task, because it played up the stereotype of middle aged women smashing dead raccoons against doors while completely ignoring the rash of young men doing the same thing.

A person on Facebook brought up a larger point: "Where are all the raccoon lovers out there? We need to unite to make sure this death was not in vain."

Most people are horrified by this incident, but not everybody. One person wrote: "I love the smell of raccoon colon in the morning."

The raccoon attack does leave some unanswered questions. Does Burlington have an ordinance against smashing dead raccoons against City Hall doors? If not, the Burlington City Council had better get busy, pronto.

And the woman who did this is still at large. Is she hunting more raccoons as we speak? Should we call in reinforcements to protect surviving raccoons?  Does the raccoon's family need help with funeral expenses? Will I get rabies if I open the door to City Hall?

I'm sure these questions will be answered, and we'll be sure to provide you with an update.

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