South Fulton County

Disturbing discovery in Chattahoochee River could impact your drinking water

SOUTH FULTON COUNTY, Ga. — Officials say they found more than 10 decapitated goats in and around the Chattahoochee River.

Channel 2's Tom Jones was in South Fulton County, where the Chattahoochee Riverkeeper found the headless animals floating down the river near the Martin Luther King Jr. Drive bridge.

Details of the discovery coming up on Channel 2 Action News This Morning.


Chattahoochee Riverkeeper Jason Ulseth's job is to patrol the river looking for pollution, sewer spills and fish kills.

Ulseth found the goat carcasses in Cobb County Wednesday as he patrolled in his boat. He said he saw what looked like white lumps floating in the water. When he got closer he made the gruesome find.

"This is pretty disturbing," Ulseth said. "Personally, I've been patrolling this river for over 11 years and I have never seen anything like this."

Ulseth told Jones he thinks someone dumped the bodies recently. Aside from being disturbing, Ulseth said the find also poses a health hazard. The Chattahoochee River is a water source for 5 million people in the metro area.

Ulseth said he has no idea why someone would dump goats in the water, but he wants to get the message out that you are harming your own drinking water.

"People that are dumping in this river go home and drink it out of their taps," Ulseth said. "And they don't make that connection that they're actually polluting their own water source."

Ulseth said the Riverkeeper doesn't have the capability to remove the animals so they just floated down the river.

Jones spoke to resident Johnny Davis, who said whoever killed the animals must be disturbed.

"Whoever did it, they are very cold-blooded," Davis said. "Whoever the person is needs to turn themselves in because they are obviously disturbed."

Goats are sometimes decapitated for certain religious ceremonies, but the practice is considered animal abuse.