ENGLAND – Three cats were recently found decapitated in south London over the weekend, according to The Guardian. It’s the latest in a series of about 50 — maybe up to 150 — pet cats which have all been discovered dismembered in the capital, which London-based charity South Norwood Animal and Rescue Liberty (SNARL) thinks dates back at least nine months.
Boudicca Rising, cofounder of SNARL which is leading all of the investigations, told The Metro she believes the murders are being committed by a single perpetrator: the so-called “Cat Ripper of Croydon” or “Croydon Cat Killer.”
Unsurprisingly, people are absolutely freaking out all over London. “Croydon Cat Killer” is one of the hottest topics on UK Twitter. There is even a joke conspiracy theory that says Conservative MP and London Mayor candidate Zac Goldsmith might be the cat killer.
Here is everything that is known so far.
Just who is the Cat Ripper of Croydon?
The person behind the attacks is still unknown.
Rising told The Guardian that the murders have all been extremely similar to one another — a sign which typically points to the behavior of a serial killer.
Adam Lynes, a criminologist from Birmingham City University, told Sky News that the killer may possibly be keeping the mutilated body parts of the cats they murder as trophies. He said:
There are quite a few parallels with serial killers who target humans who take trophies such as watches, underwear, jewelry, or even hair. And that could very well be the case that this person is keeping the heads and tails (of the cats) as trophies, to re-live the moment.
Amber Lewis and her son Liam, below, were the owners of a cat named Leo who was one of the many victims of the cat killer, according to The Guardian.
— London News (@DaiIyLONDON) April 23, 2016
When and where was the vey first attack?
“It is difficult to say for sure when the person behind the attacks first struck. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) and animal welfare charities are aware of at least 150 cases of a similar nature stretching back as far as 2013, which they say could possibly all be linked.
However, the Croydon Cat Ripper name was first used when a multitude of cat murders were reported between September and December 2015 in the south London borough of Croydon. At least seven cats were found mutilated in the area — an example is 9-year-old Missy, who was discovered in a hedge with her head and tail cut off on December 7 last year.”
Where else have attacks been carried out?
“The spree has become synonymous with the Croydon area in Greater London, but cats have been found with brutal, fatal injuries across the capital. In the last few months, bodies were discovered in Tottenham and Archway in North London and places in the south like Streatham, according to the Daily Mail.
Rising told the Mail that similar attacks have even been reported in least four counties surrounding the city — Surrey, Hampshire, Bedfordshire, and Kent — and she believes they were committed by the same person.
If Rising is correct, that would mean the Croydon Cat Killer has struck in locations over 60 miles away from the south London borough, as the map below shows.”
Just how many animals have been killed that are believed to be related to the Cat Ripper?
Over 50 cats have been found murdered in the Croydon alone, however, Rising told the Mail last week she feared that the number could be far greater. She said:
“We’ve had attacks from Luton all the way down to Frimley in Surrey and across to Farnborough in Hampshire. The attacks are happening anywhere within the M25 and outside of it. We are being deluged with hundreds and hundreds of calls.”
Are cats the only victims of the ripper?
“No. Rabbits, foxes, and birds have been found murdered in a similar fashion.”
What are the hallmark signs of a Croydon Cat Ripper attack?
“The murders aren’t just linked by where they took place but by the injuries suffered by the cats. The vast majority of bodies have been found without heads, tails, and paws.”
Rising said: “We’ve got so used to seeing the injuries now that we rarely make a mistake.”
“The bodies all showed signs of blunt force trauma, too, according to The Metro. This means the cats could have met their end as a result of being hit with a blunt object or thrown against a wall. A previous theory suggests that some of them may have been knocked down by a car before they were beheaded, according to the publication.”
What is the buzz about the attacks?
A host of celebrities including actor Martin Clunes, TV presenters Caroline Flack and Dermot O’Leary, and musician Josh Franceschi have each voiced their concern about the threat the Cat Ripper of Croydon poses to the community and its pets. Clunes wrote a letter to Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, the London Metropolitan police commissioner, which stated:
“This is the stuff of nightmares. The local community is understandably distraught and frightened. No one feels safe while this sick individual is on the loose. Research in psychology and criminology shows that people who commit acts of cruelty to animals don’t stop there – many of them move on to their fellow humans. That is a scary thought indeed.”
What is being done about it now?
The RSPCA told The Observer just last week that it is working closely with vets who are conducting thorough investigations into 20 cases. It said:
“Examination of the bodies we have received showed that the heads and tails appear to have been removed by a human. A dedicated team is continuing to work closely with the police and looking into all evidence to see if there is deliberate cruelty involved.”
Animal rights charity PETA has also recently put up a £5,000, ($7,300), reward for information which ends up leading to the killer’s arrest, who remains at large.
A spokesperson for The Metropolitan police told BI in an emailed statement that the investigations are continuing into a number of incidents relating to cat deaths in the Croydon area.
We here at the Best Cat Page have only one question to pose which was not addressed within this original article. That is simply, if you live anywhere around the areas of the killings and you have cats which you continue to let outside, then why are you all so surprised that your cats wind up slaughtered?
Furthermore, If you let your cat outside and it ends up dead like the others, then YOU YOURSELF are partially to blame! Is your new sofa that you don’t want scratched so worth the life of your beloved cat? For some, maybe it is. Food for thought!
KEEP YOUR CATS INDOORS OR AT LEAST MONITORED CLOSELY UNTIL THIS LUNATIC IS BROUGHT TO JUSTICE FOR GOD’S SAKE!