A Byford woman has condemned an act of animal cruelty after finding a dead rabbit strung up to a signpost just metres from a primary school.
Lana Stevenson came across the disturbing sight at the intersection of Larson and Alexander roads at about 6.30am on Wednesday while driving home after buying milk.
“I had been sick and it was only about 6.30 in the morning so I was that out of it that I probably drove another couple hundred metres before it clicked and I went ‘what the hell was that?’” she said.
“I did a loop back and I was half thinking it was a kid’s toy because that made more sense to me but when I parked and looked out the window I just thought ‘yeah that looks life-like to me.”
Ms Stevenson said she drove home and returned with a friend to remove the animal so children walking to school wouldn’t have to see it.
“You had an animal lover and a vegetarian so you’ve got the two worst people to have to go and do this but we’ve got school aged kids and school was starting and I thought ‘these kids can’t see that,’” she said.
Ms Stevenson said it was unclear how it was killed but was disturbed by the way it had been displayed so close to a school.
“We’re in a semi rural area and I understand a lot of people don’t like cats or rabbits because of the nature of where we live – I get that and it’s so easy especially at daybreak to hit a wild rabbit – they’re everywhere,” she said.
“But your average Joe would either keep driving or get out and drag it off the road, especially being near a school.
“To go and string it up near a school makes me think do they really hate animals that much or is it children they hate?
“It was taped to pole with this white tape and that bothered us too because who carries tape?”
Ms Stevenson said the incident was reported to police, the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale and the RSPCA.
She said the school had also been informed about the incident.
An RSPCA spokeswoman said the incident was being investigated and called on the public to come forward with any further information.
“Any act of cruelty against animals is an offence punishable by law and there is no excuse whatsoever for cruel and malicious behaviour towards animals,” she said.
“The maximum penalty for animal cruelty in WA is a $50,000 fine or five years imprisonment.
“Anyone who witnesses animal cruelty should immediately report it to RSPCA’s cruelty hotline on 1300 278 3589.”