Bobcat attacks two men, animal sent off for testing

Seeing a bobcat in the middle of Brady is not something that happens every day, but two separate bobcat attacks on grown men reported within minutes of each other is downright rare. The first attack happened at the intersection of Boy Street and North Bridge. City employees Rufus Beam and Marvin Smith were standing near the intersection discussing a project when all of a sudden and without any warning, a bobcat attacked Beam from behind. The bobcat scratched and clawed Beam on the arm and back and bit him on the shoulder before he could rid himself of the crazed feline. “I managed to grab it and throw it to the ground and kick it, but after it got its senses, it started to come back for a second try at us,” said Beam. “We started hollering and making as much noise as we could as we hopped into the back of one of the city trucks. We had some things back there we figured we could use as clubs if it came after us again and as we were standing there in the back of the truck, the cat tried to jump into the cab of the pickup.” According to both Beam and Smith, the cat then began to make a casual getaway hissing and growling. As it passed a fenced yard, a pit bull charged it and then made a hasty retreat as the cat stood its ground. “That cat made it known that it was not scared of anything by the way it was hollering and hissing,” said Beam. Police officers and EMS crews were dispatched to the scene and only a short time later, the call from the second attack was received by Brady dispatch. Vincent Castanuela Jr. was at home at his apartment on Nueva Drive when his young son came inside and told him that there was a bobcat outside. “You know how kids are, sometimes there are some pretty tall tales they tell, but I went outside to check anyway and sure enough, there it was,” said Castanuela. “As I came around the corner of the house, it saw me and came after me. It jumped on me before I could get away and it clawed and scratched me on my side and legs. “I managed to grab it around the neck with one hand, but it was scratching and clawing me, so I threw it as hard as I could and it took off running. I am just glad that it didn’t go after my son.” Police officers who responded to the second call saw the bobcat for a split second and were able to fire off several rounds at the cat but they did not hit the animal. By this time, city workers and volunteers had taken up lookout points near the creek and electric department supervisor Randy Barrows actually saw the bobcat casually walk within a few feet of his pickup. “I looked down and sure enough, there it was right by the door of the truck. All I had with me was my phone so I took a picture of it and it kept right on going.” A concerted effort to track down and kill the bobcat was made in order to have it tested by authorities for rabies or other diseases. The chase ended on the banks of Brady Creek just downstream from the bridge that crosses the creek by Richards Park. With several police officers armed with shotguns accompanied by two volunteer firefighters armed with rifles, the cat was sighted as it traveled along the creek. The animal was dispatched by the officers and firefighters. City employees retrieved the bobcat and animal control officer John Russell took the carcass to a local veterinarian to be sent off for testing. Beam and Castanuela each made a trip to the local emergency room where their wounds were bandaged and preliminary antibiotics and tetanus shots were administered. Reports were received Tuesday morning that there was a resident of the area where the initial attack occurred who was known to have kept a female bobcat as a pet. Brady police officers were investigating the rumors in an attempt to help piece the puzzle of the instance together to help explain why the attack may have occurred.

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