Slaughtered cow cases stir concern by farmers, law enforcement

(WBIR-Rogersville) It's a case authorities call "strange" and "bizarre"-- why would someone kill a cow, with no clear motive? It's a case that's not just in one, but two East Tennessee counties.

According to a report, deputies discovered a cow slaughtered in a field in a Hawkins County farm, located near Rogersville. The report says the cow was cut down the neck and spine, and the meat from the animal was taken away.

"(It's been) Many, many years that we had one like this. We had one shot on the roadway like they would a deer -- that's happened in the past. But, into the field and cut one's throat and cut pieces off," Hawkins County Sheriff Ronnie Lawson said Wednesday.

The owner of the cow said its value was about $500, but Sheriff Lawson said this larceny has a reciprocal effect.

"It affects that farmer because it has a reason for that, and of course it affects our economy when things like that happen to you," the sheriff added.

Then, two weeks later on Thanksgiving, another cow slaughtering case popped up again, this time in Greeneville.

"You hear of it, but it's like so many other things, it's somewhere else. It's not yours," said Gary Miller. His significant other discovered another dead cow, a 500-pound angus, killed on November 28, in a field on their farm.

The report said the cow was gutted too. It has a cost of $900. One sheriff's deputy told 10News he hasn't heard of anything like this in Greene County in decades.

"All carved up, and its carcass was laying there," Miller added.

Miller does not know who did the crime, but called the ordeal "disturbing," especially with another farmer dealing with the same problem.

"It's been crazy," said Miller. "People don't give respect anymore."

So far, no arrests have been made on either case, and authorities from both counties do not believe the cases are connected.

Sheriff Lawson said the department is close to identifying a "person of interest" in the first case.


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