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Police on Standby, After Coyote Sightings in Heath
HEATH (James Jackson) -- Police in a Central Ohio community are on standby right now, after a coyote was repeatedly spotted roaming the area.
Nancy Johnson took her grandson, Austin, to play in a Heath park. She always keeps him close. But, says word of a coyote around the area doesn't bother her. "I don't think about it too much. I know there are some in the area. I know there are some in Newark, at the TJ Evans park over there. But I've never seen any coyotes, so I never worry about it," Johnson said.
But, news of the wild animal did worry some, after it was spotted roaming near Stevenson Elementary School and surrounding neighborhoods. Heath police say the last time someone saw it was early Wednesday morning. Patrol officers are ready to respond, if it's seen again. Detective Mark Phillips patrols the streets on Friday nights. "All officer have been instructed that if we are able to locate it and if it acting aggressively, that it's to be destroyed," Phillips said.
Steve Coulter is a retired officer with the department. "Since it's just a single coyote and at the time of the day that it's being seen, that it's a young male pup that's been removed from the den by it's parents and made to fend for itself," Coulter said.
But now, officers say there's a strong possibility that young male has moved from the area to a place where there are not as many people. They say there's never been a coyote attack in Heath. But, just in case, they urge you to keep an eye on your small pets and call them if you see it, at (740) 522-2141.