Net closes on 'Croydon Cat Killer' amid hopes that decapitated cat scratched villain

A pet charity has gathered what may be DNA from under the claws of tortoiseshell moggy Amber and the Met Police is prepared to accept it as evidence The net is closing in on the ‘Croydon Cat Killer’ suspected of slicing off heads and tails of more than 30 felines after new DNA evidence emerged, police say.

A pet charity has gathered what may be genetic material from under the claws of one of the alleged crook’s victims and the Met Police is prepared to accept it as evidence. South Norwood Animal Rescue and Liberty (SNARL) has raised £5,000 to carry out its investigation alongside the police into the deaths of dozens of pet cats in the Croydon, south London, area. Boudicca Rising, SNARL’s co-founder, says vets may have found DNA beneath the claws of tortoiseshell moggy Amber who was found without its head or tail.She said: “We think there may be DNA on Amber. There’s material under her claws and the vet is testing to see if there is DNA there.“The one thing she hated was being picked up and she may have scratched the attacker.

“I bloody well hope it will lead to a criminal conviction.”Dad-of-two Wayne Bryant, 47, was left distraught after his wife found Amber in a wooded area opposite their home in Croydon in October.A Met spokesman said: “A local animal charity are arranging DNA testing on one of the deceased animals. “The borough commander is happy to discuss the results of the DNA testing with them.“This is an ongoing investigation and as such it would be inappropriate to comment further until all of the facts have been established.
“Police in Croydon are investigating a number of incidents relating to cat deaths in the Croydon area.“We are currently working to establish the facts. ”SNARL has used online fundraising site to carry out post-mortems and DNA tests using a private lab.The DNA results will be passed directly to police, who say the evidence could be used to get a criminal prosecution.Three post-mortems have been carried out so far and while one appeared to indicate a car accident, the other two appeared to have been decapitated with the same cutting pattern, according to Boudicca.The Met Police have not yet confirmed what has been gleaned from the slain cat’s post mortem, but have vowed to examine any DNA evidence found. The post mortem results could take up to eight weeks to get back from the lab.Meanwhile, PETA have offered a whopping £2,000 reward for information to convict the killer.The charity is also advising pet owners to keep their animals indoors under a “watchful eye”. Elisa Allen, PETA associate director, said: “The pain and fear that any of these cats experienced is unimaginable, so it’s imperative that any community faced with such sadistic and violent acts take measures to find the culprit and bring him or her to justice.“Animal abusers are a danger to everyone - they take their issues out on whoever is available to them, human or non-human, and must be caught before they act again. Surrey Police are also investigating the latest cat death, of a family moggy named Missy.Sergeant Ross Spanton described Missy’s decapitation as a “disgusting and horrifying incident which has understandably left the family extremely distressed.” He added: “I would like to reassure the local community that active enquiries are underway to identify those responsible and I would urge anyone with any information to contact police.”The RSPCA are also investigating, but at the moment they suspect the cats were already dead before they were mutilated.A spokesperson said: “We will be surveying any evidence we are given to see if there is deliberate cruelty involved here.“Thankfully acts of deliberate violence against dead cats are rare and thorough research has shown that these kind of injuries can be caused by wildlife after death. ”Killing small animals is one of the traits that make up the Macdonald triad - a set of three behavioural characteristics that, if two or all three are present, could indicate an individual may be a sociopath.

The three signs are cruelty to animals, an obsession with setting fires and persistent bedwetting past a certain age.American serial killer Edmund Kemper, who was convicted of eight murders but suspected of having more victims, exhibited extreme cruelty to animals at an early age before going on to shoot his grandparents and murder hitchhikers.Another person who killed a number of animals before moving onto human victims was Richard Chase, also known as the ‘Vampire of Sacramento’, who killed six people in the space of a month in the late 70s.John Duffy and David Mulcahy, known as the Railway Killers, committed three murders in and around London in the 1980s and a number of brutal rapes, are also thought to have exhibited cruelty towards animals.