Disturbing case of cat’s remains left on Bellevue park grill remains unsolved

“It was disturbing but there’s also closure to know he passed away instead of still lost or hurt and in pain somewhere.”
The cat's owner and the Bellevue police want answers.
Published: Jul. 21, 2022 at 10:30 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

BELLEVUE, Neb. (WOWT) - Bellevue police confirmed the bizarre story on Wednesday about a lost cat found dead in a neighborhood park, its head left on the public grill. How it got there remains a mystery.

James Stutts’ two-and-a-half-year-old cat hadn’t returned to the house for a couple of days and Saturday, he learned the bad news. Nomu was found dead just a block away from home.

”It was disturbing but there’s also closure to know he passed away instead of still lost or hurt and in pain somewhere,” Stutts said.

Four days later he was told the cat’s remains had been found on a grill at Two Springs Park. He then mistakenly believed his cat’s head had been severed, the implication being it was somehow decapitated by a person.

”Yesterday the (Nebraska) Humane Society called us and told us about the state of his body, and that was even worse,” Stutts said. “My girlfriend, she was heartbroken.”

One neighbor tells 6 News he reported what he thought was a dead cat in the park last week and another said she saw large birds picking at what appeared to be a cat there as well.

Today, the Nebraska Humane Society (NHS) clarified what they discovered on the call with Bellevue Police. Yes, Nomu’s head is what mostly remained of its ravaged and decomposed body but there appeared to be no human involvement in his death.

The NHS said Nomu was likely killed by another animal before its remains became the target for other animals.

“That’s a little better, just nature being nature, not humans with malicious intent,” Stutts said.

Dusty Schelbitzki is depredation manager with Nebraska Parks and Game. While it’s unknown what exactly killed Nomu, he said it’s important to understand why domestic pets fall prey to wildlife.

”It’s not uncommon that they do attack pets because it can be a typical predatory response is to try and gain food, some of it could be basic territorial response to an area,” Schelbitzki said.

While no one has reported any unexpected wildlife sightings in the neighborhood, Schelbitzki said urban areas are attractive to wildlife because of limited predation and available food and water. Keeping your pets close or on a leash and not letting them out in the evening can keep them safe from the unknown.

“One big thing I’ll say is about wildlife is definitely do not feed wildlife in an urban setting,” he said. “That gives them a sense of where they’re gonna get food and gives them a sense of not to be scared of people.”

Indications are Nomu died of natural causes and the state of his remains similarly caused. But the disturbing fact is that it appears someone placed his body on a BBQ grill in the quiet neighborhood park.

“If this was something where say a wild animal attacked the cat and somebody found the cat or what was left of it in the area and they simply put it on the grill, we would like to talk to that person, just to find that out,” Bellevue Police Captain Andy Jashinske said. “I think that would help to put the neighborhood at ease.”

Stutts wants to know who is responsible for placing his pet’s remains there.

“That’s just cruel, to do that to, someone’s pet,” he said. “But that person needs help and I would like to know that it doesn’t happen anymore.”

Jashinske added that he’s unaware of any similar cases in Bellevue, recently or in the past, saying Two Springs is a safe park and neighborhood. He did implore the public to contact the Bellevue Police Department with any information.

He added that anyone who encounters remains of an animal should contact NHS or the police department.

Copyright 2022 WOWT. All rights reserved.