Residents in a Chandler Heights neighborhood have encountered gruesome discoveries of mutilated animals this month.
Denise Underwood, who lives in the 1200 block of East Mead Drive, discovered the body of her 8-year-old cat, Tuxedo, the morning of Sept. 11 with an incision between its neck and groin area and its organs removed, according to Sgt. Joe Favazzo, a spokesman for the Chandler Police Department.
The cat did not return home after Underwood let it out the night before, Favazzo said.
"There was no blood, and the way it happened, the cat wasn't killed by any other animal," Favazzo said. "It certainly seems to be an isolated incident."
But Underwood maintains that other animals have been mutilated in a similar way in her neighborhood, east of South McQueen Road, between Ocotillo and Chandler Heights roads.
The cat would usually wait at the door to be let back inside the home and be fed about 5 a.m., but that morning he wasn't there so Underwood began to look for him, she said.
"I'm hurt more than anything," Underwood said. "It's the life of an animal, and that animal is part of the family. I don't understand the concept behind the violence of this."
Favazzo said the case involving Underwood's cat has been suspended because of a lack of leads, but Underwood told the Tribune on Wednesday she placed fliers in the neighborhood park close to her family's home to warn residents what has happened to animals throughout the month.
Underwood said that days before she discovered Tuxedo on the greenbelt, a neighbor showed her the body of a white rabbit she discovered in the neighborhood park near Underwood's home. After learning about Underwood's discovery, another resident in an adjoining neighborhood told Underwood that he had found the body and head of a cat that had been decapitated. The man, who didn't know if the cat was anyone's pet, disposed of it because no one realized at the time that there had been other similar incidents involving animals, according to Underwood.
Another neighbor's cat has been missing since Tuesday, Underwood said.
"Our concern is No. 1, for other people's pets, and No. 2, this could escalate to other activities," Underwood said.
However, police have not received any other complaints of similar discoveries involving animals, Favazzo said.
"We have no information at all and no suspects," Favazzo said. "We would like to tell people to be responsible pet owners and keep control of their pets within their property."
If anyone encounters a similar situation regarding the discovery of a mutilated animal, they can call Chandler police at (480) 782-4130, Favazzo said.