Clarke County

20+ bags of decapitated animals found in woods near Athens apartment complex

ATHENS, Ga. — The carcasses of goats, pigeons, chickens and a small pig were all found decaying in bags in the woods near an Athens apartment complex on Saturday, police said.

Neighbors of the complex said the couldn’t stand the foul smell coming from the woods and when they looked closely, they made a frightening discovery.

[DOWNLOAD: Free WSB-TV News app for alerts as news breaks]

“It was very bizarre and disgusting,” said resident Kathleen McGovern.

McGovern showed Reagan the woods near her apartment where she spotted black trash bags tossed to the ground.

Each holding a dark secret...the rotting remains of decapitated and dismembered animals.

“Why are you dumping them where people clearly live?, McGovern asked. I don’t know if there’s disease, or flu going around, It’s disturbing on any level.”


Athens Police officers responded and found approximately 1-3 carcasses in each of the 20-plus bags they found. They found decapitated pigeons and chickens in the bags. They believe the remains were dumped over a period of several months, perhaps years.

“I don’t have a reason, perhaps it could be some ritual. I don’t why they dispose of these things properly,” McGovern said.

A fringe religion from the Caribbean and Africa believes animal sacrifices can help cleanse evil. Instances and evidence of this ritual are showing up more frequently in metro Atlanta. But, those who’ve seen what would be the outcome of this ritual, said it’s revolting.

[SIGN UP: WSB-TV Daily Headlines Newsletter]

“I think there’s animal cruelty here, in which case it’s really disturbing,” said McGovern

Police said their investigation is ongoing. They have not made an arrest in connection with this suspected animal abuse.