Report from Leo Martin
Retired Highland detective John Cathcart tells Callum McLeod of his evidence that Alien Big Cats are alive and well and roaming in woods near you.
Years after leaving the Northern Constabulary, former Detective Sergeant John Cathcart is still collecting evidence. Since the late 70's Inverness man John has amassed a collection of witness statements, sketches, photographs and video clips to show that killers stalk the Highland Glens. But John is not pursuing some unsolved murder. Instead he believes the culprits he is trying to track down have four legs, a tail, long claws and very sharp teeth.
"I'm quite convinced there are a lot of cranks, but by the same token I'm convinced that a lot of these reports are genuine," he said.
One big cat has already been captured in the Highlands. An elderly female puma was caught by farmer Ted Noble near Cannich in 1979 and was taken to Kincraig Wildlife Park where she was named Felicity. After the animals death she was stuffed and exhibited at Inverness Museum Art Gallery. It was the capture of Felicity that sparked John's interest in big cat sightings. At that time the forces poaching liaison officer, John was asked by the Chief Constable to investigate reports of big cats and the potential threat to livestock.
A prisoner serving a sentence at Winchester Prison, David Carter, claimed he had released a pair of pumas near Cannich and Felicity was one of these. John agrees this is possible, but has his doubts.
"Everything he said he could have got from the press, but it was obviously something along these lines that led to the animals running free," he suggested.
1 st December 1995
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