Man finds stowaway raccoon 20 miles out at sea, then films himself forcing it to drown
A man has come in for extreme criticism after filming himself allegedly forcing a raccoon to drown more than 20 miles out at sea after it had snuck onto his boat without him realising.
Florida attorney Thomas Cope posted several videos of himself shooing a raccoon off his boat several miles from sea, after it emerged growling and hissing after stowing itself on the water vessel.
"So long, sucker," says a voice, presumbaly Cope's, that can be heard on the footage, and the video quickly went viral on Facebook, where people were furious at Cope's conduct that day.
These are the heartbreaking videos Cope shared to Facebook (warning, some may find the footage upsetting):
"Share this so people know what a real POS [piece of s***] Thomas Cope is," captions the Facebook post, which went live on May 8.
"Its [sic] one thing to hunt animals for food or maybe not even like a particular animal, but to leave one 20 miles out in the ocean to suffer a horrible death is not what true 'outdoorsman' [sic] do. It’s what cowardly entitled scumbag degenerate dirtbags do. This raccoon was just being a raccoon."
"What a coward. Thomas Cope was obviously afraid of the racoon...an effing sissy that I would NEVER hire to represent me! IDIOT!" said one furious Facebook user, while another added: "Pos [Piece of s***]. I’d like to push him and his asshole friends off 20 miles from shore. The raccoon was not bothering them."
In response to the backlash on Facebook, Cope then released a statement where he apologised for his actions. He said that if there was a way for him to get the raccoon back safely to shore, he would have done that instead.
"The animal was running around the boat hissing and growling, making it impossible for me or my friend to drive the boat. Knowing raccoons can be rabid and unpredictable, the only realistic option we could think of in the moment was to get the raccoon off the boat."
In addition to this, the incident was reported to the Florida State Wildlife Agency, who say they have taken the incident "very seriously".
Asking for more information, they said: "It is still too early to speculate as to what violations took place in this incident. However, the FWC would like to state that we believe these vile acts of animal cruelty have no place in our state or anywhere else."