Beheaded farm animals found in two separate incidents in a Middle Island cemetery in recent weeks appear to be the product of animal sacrifice and religious ritual, authorities said.
Suffolk County SPCA detectives responded to Union Cemetery on Wednesday, Nov. 8, after they were alerted that a man walking his dog near the entrance had discovered a bag containing a beheaded chicken and chunks of coconut.
The detectives additionally found the skeletal remains of a goat head, along with a variety of fruits, vegetables and candles at the graveyard, located at 141 Middle Country Road.
Three weeks earlier at the same cemetery, detectives encountered another grisly find: the remains of a beheaded chicken, black rooster and white dove. The dead animals were positioned in a circular pattern, in detectives described as a “ritualistic sacrifice.”
Additionally, two decapitated chickens were found in front of a headstone, not far away at Old Baptist Cemetery in Coram in August, said Roy Gross, chief of the Suffolk County SPCA.
The Suffolk SPCA is offering a $2,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the individuals responsible for what they called “barbaric acts of animal cruelty for unjustifiably harming, mutilating or killing an animal.”
“All too many times these gruesome finds are discovered not only by adults but occasionally by children. These acts of violence must stop now!” the Suffolk SPCA said in a statement.
The gravesites in Union Cemetery date back to the 1700s. Some local folks in recent years have taken to YouTube and blogs to document the rumored “paranormal activity” there.
Below is one of the videos.
Top image: Google Maps