Raccoons are reportedly terrorizing the citizens of Harlem by pillaging their homes, stealing food — and eating animals.
Multiple West Harlem residents have spotted the masked marauders causing mischief in and around West 121 Street in the past month. One of the victims, Debora Clark Fairfax, claims raccoons broke into her home through the window three times to raid her pantry and snack on peanuts and cat food. Via DNAInfo:
“We couldn’t figure out why the cat’s water was so dirty,” she said.
But then, she said, she noticed the floor speckled with raccoon footprints.
Another victim claims she saw a glimpse of a raccoon near an abandoned home where some think the raccoons have been nesting. “I started howling and screaming,” she said. “I was scared to death.”
In an even more terrifying incident, one raccoon allegedly de-shelled a turtle:
Some said a raccoon ate a turtle and fish in a backyard pond at the home of former mayoral candidate Bill Thompson.
“It ate the turtle and left the shell,” Bediako said. Thompson could not be reached for comment.
(What if it had eaten the shell and left the turtle?) Raccoons have also been seen fraternizing in squads. But what is the city doing to get rid of these terrorist raccoons? The Health Department only responds to “rabid” raccoons, so the answer is nothing.
A spokesperson told DNAInfo in an email:
“Property owners are responsible for removing a nuisance raccoon and should hire a nuisance trapper licensed by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). If the property owner chooses to remove the raccoon themselves, they must do so in accordance with the Conservation Laws overseen by DEC. If a raccoon is deemed dangerous — meaning it has attacked or may attack, 911 should be called for an immediate response.”
In other words, raccoons run the city. You’re on your own.
Image via Shutterstock