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North Slope Police Probe Mystery of Dead Cows

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North Slope Police Probe Mystery of Dead Cows



Posted by : (Stig Agermose)

Forwarded by: Todd Andrews

AP March 19. URL: (BROKEN Link)


North Slope Police Probe Mystery of Dead Cows


03/19/98 08:46PM 2433 characters 47 lines

** The Associated Press (c). All rights reserved. **




BARROW, Alaska (AP) _ Select from the following group of words, the noun or phrase that doesn't seem to fit: polar bear, caribou, arctic tundra, Holsteins.


On March 5, around 7:50 p.m. a caller informed North Slope Borough police officer Joe Pruitt, that two dead moose had been discovered at the old Happy Valley pipeline construction camp, south of Deadhorse.


But Pruitt, who is stationed near the edge of the Arctic Ocean at Prudhoe Bay, soon learned that the caller had it wrong. She should have said "dead moos" _ as in cows, bovines, Holsteins.


Pruitt and Alaska State Troopers are investigating how and why two cows turned up dead along the Dalton Highway at Happy Valley, a deserted construction camp once used by workers building the trans-Alaska oil pipeline.


It's not clear how they died. And Pruitt isn't entirely sure what charges will be filed if authorities ever find those responsible for dumping the cows.


"I'd have to look at my statute book," he said. "I'd probably find two or three, though. Definitely littering. And that alone is a $1,000 fine."


Pruitt said one of the two cows had an ear tag, which might help authorities track down the bovines' owner.


Meanwhile, theories about the cows' presence on Alaska's North Slope range from comical to credible.


Perhaps someone intended to transport the cows to Deadhorse and then butcher them there for a profit. A hind quarter is missing from one of the carcasses.


Or maybe a couple of less-than-sporting hunters intended to use the remains as an enticement to lure polar bears, grizzly bears or wolves (although shooting a pair of resident caribou would have been a heck of a lot simpler than driving nearly the full length of the notoriously challenging Dalton Highway toting a pair of bulky cows.)


Last week, as the investigation into the discovery continued, the cows still lingered, frozen stiff in the sub-zero cold at Happy Valley.


And the caller who first identified the cows as dead moose, and who has asked to remain anonymous, is being teased mercilessly by co-workers at a nearby oil field facility. Flash cards one picturing the silhouette of a moose and another picturing a cow have been offered for the caller's edification.


And in recognition of Deadhorse, the neighboring community up the road, there's been talk of renaming Happy Valley "Deadcow."


_AP-WS-03-19-98 2234EST


Event - 1998-03-05; USA, Alaska, Deadhorse



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