Furious cops say suspected murder victim was ‘a cow in a tracksuit’

Furious police have expressed their frustration after a report of a potential murder victim found in the remote Pilbara region turned out to be a dead cow in a tracksuit.

A walker in Western Australia found what they initially believed to be a dead body near a trail in the town of Wickham last week and reported it to police.

A response team was scrambled from Roebourne, around eight miles away, and the area was declared a crime scene while they studied the grisly find.

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Senior Sergeant Police Dale Harmer told ABC News: ”With the assistance of our local forensic officers and the forensic pathologist in Perth, [we] identified the remains there to actually be of an animal," he said.

He added: "The remains were stuffed inside a tracksuit to make it look like it was human remains.

"[It] has caused police to use an entire day and three police officers guarding a scene for something which was never a human in the first place."

Senior Sergeant Harmer said police attending the scene had immediately thought the situation did not "look right", but they were still obliged to follow protocol.

"You can't just go into looking at something like that and lifting it up and digging around it to see if it's human remains or animal remains, we need the right people up here to do that," he said.

"They do have to err on the side of caution and get the right people in, every time."

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Forensic experts from from the nearby city of Karratha had to be diverted from other investigations in order to confirm the .

Senior Sergeant Harmer said the abortive investigation had been been an enormous waste of police time and tax payers’ money and reduced officers’ ability to serve the community in a region where resources were already limited.

Local cattle farmers have been complaining for some time that water supply in the hot, dry region was inadequate and it’s possible that the cow had simply died of dehydration.

The presence of the tracksuit remains unexplained.


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