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Coyote captured by Arlington authorities after 3 children bitten at park

By Johannah Grenaway, Nicole Nielsen, Lauren Crawford

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    ARLINGTON, Texas (KTVT) — Members of the Arlington Police Department and Arlington Animal Services caught one coyote at Parkway Central Park Thursday morning. This comes after reports of three children being bitten by a coyote since Saturday.

It’s not known yet whether one or multiple coyotes bit the children, but there are other coyotes in the area.

Patrol officers told CBS News Texas they used a non-lethal baton round, which is not a gun. When that round struck the coyote, it stunned the animal enough to give officers the opportunity to attach a harness and remove it from the park.

Animal services and patrol officers were on the ground at the park before sunrise Thursday, serving as a layer of protection for the community as kids walked to school. They also used drones to keep an eye out for movement in the woods.

“We saw the coyote on the back side. He went back around and then he came out,” said APD Sgt. Eric Belisle. “Then he charged us and that’s when I hit him with the less lethal.”

The coyotes are native to the area and are supposed to live in peace. A neighbor who lives across the street from the park said it’s normal to see them roam the area, but last night, he saw one that he knew was suspicious so he called 911.

“Definitely, probably won’t feel safe about walking…” said Rashen Sinclair.

The city of Arlington says animal control will take over from here. The coyote was humanely euthanized and taken to Texas Health and Human Services to be tested for rabies. Biologists with the USDA will take over the investigation and are asking the public to give them space to work.

Police are not letting down their guard, as there are multiple coyotes in the area. The park will remain closed until further notice.

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