ROYAL CENTER — A cow carcass was discovered in a ditch not far from the residence of a Royal Center man who said he properly buried a cow he owned that died in October.
On Oct. 13, the Pharos-Tribune reported a dead cow could be seen on a property off West Ind. 16 near Royal Center owned by Michael Scott Hunter.
Hunter said the cow died Oct. 4 and that he buried it Oct. 7, adding that he did not know how it died. While state law says dead livestock has to be buried within 24 hours, Hunter said it took him a few days to acquire the equipment to bury the animal.
Bob Vernon, office administrator of the Cass County Health Department, said after looking into the matter that Hunter told him he buried the animal, requiring no further need for the health department.
The animal had rope binding its front legs, which Hunter explained was used to drag the animal out of the barn after he discovered it had died.
Rope was also found strewn about the skeletal remains of an animal in a ditch off of 500 N. in Cass County, about three miles from Hunter’s home.
Brian Swartzell, a Cass County Sheriff’s deputy who works part time as the town marshal for Royal Center, said he received a tip informing him of a cow carcass in a ditch similar to the one described in the Oct. 13 news report.
Swartzell said he found the carcass in the ditch off of 500 North with rope around it and carpet padding beneath it. Upon arriving at Hunter’s residence to approach him about the matter, Swartzell said he noticed carpet padding in the front yard matching the kind under the cow carcass in the ditch.
When the remains were photographed, only bones and rope remained.