From the police blotter:
- Southampton, U.K. 5/23/11 Several members of the public reported seeing a live white tiger in a field near Hedge End. Armed police arrived at the scene, confirmed the sighting, and scrambled a helicopter. Specialists from nearby Marwell Zoo arrived on scene to tranquilize the wild animal. A local golf course was evacuated, a cricket game was stopped, and plans were put in place to close the nearby M27 motorway if the tiger moved in that direction. Police approached the beast, but it didn't move, nor did it register on thermal imaging equipment. When the downdraft from the helicopter knocked it over, the authorities moved in...and found a life-size plush toy (1st image).
- Michigan, U.S. 5/14/09 Ten Warren police officers responded to a 911 call about a cougar on the prowl after dark. The caller told the operator, "It's huge. It's like a 150-pound cat....I'm telling you, I think I see a black panther over here....I'm not playing games." Neither were the law enforcement officials, considering how close the animal was to a playground. They took down the big cat with a taser...and found it to be a stuffed animal (3rd image).
- Missouri, U.S. 5/28/11 A resident in a subdivision of suburban Kansas City called police to report that his children had spotted an alligator in a pond. After consulting a conservation agent, who told them to kill the gator if they felt it posed a danger, the officers used their sidearms to dispatch the animal by shooting it in the head as it lay in the weeds. The beast was mortally wounded. "The officer fired two rounds, and killed my concrete, ornamental alligator," the owner told reporters (2nd image).