Residents of a town in north-central Mexico were stunned to see a dog running down the street with a human head in its mouth.
Officials in the violence-plagued state of Zacatecas confirmed the incident and said Thursday that police eventually managed to wrest the head away from the dog.
A law enforcement official who was not authorized to be quoted by name said the head and other body parts had been left in an ATM booth in the town of Monte Escobedo late Wednesday.
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There was a message about a drug cartel left with the human remains. However, a stray dog made off with the corpse’s head before the police could do anything.
A video that was shared on social media showed the dog running down a dark street while carrying the head by the neck in its mouth, seemingly with the intention of bringing it to a safe location to be eaten.
Zacatecas has been the scene of a bloody, extended turf war between local gangs backed by the Sinaloa and Jalisco drug cartels.
Drug cartels in Mexico frequently leave notes alongside heaps of dismembered human remains, as a way to intimidate rivals or authorities.
In June, the bodies of seven men were found in a popular tourist region with warning messages written on their corpses referencing the Gulf Cartel, which operates mainly along the U.S. border to the north.
In April, six severed heads were reportedly discovered on a car roof in Mexico with a sign warning others: “This will happen to anyone who messes around.”
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