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“It could be much worse than an animal slaughter,” Police investigate mutilated animals in Oklahoma City neighborhood

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OKLAHOMA CITY -- It's pretty common for Debbie and Curtis Robertson to spot wild rabbits in their northwest Oklahoma City neighborhood.

Here, new neighborhoods and farmland coexist.

"The rabbits are beautiful our grandkids get a kick out of them. We enjoy then a lot. But we may not have anymore. They might all be dead," Debbie said.

Thursday evening,just a few doors down from the Robertsons, a neighbor found a dead, skinned rabbit deliberately placed on her mailbox.

Grotesque, frightening and unfortunately, not an isolated case.

"The lady across the street said it happened to her and someone said they found dead rabbits back in December in her driveway that had been slaughtered," she said.

Sick prank or something more? That's what Curtis Robertson wants to know.

"Punk kids or could lead to something worse. Just bad guys," Curtis said.

"There tends to be a starting point. That's what our son-in-law was talking about last night. He works for Del City police. He says that's a starting point for something that comes on later. It could be much worse than an animal slaughter," Debbie added.

Oklahoma City police plan to beef up patrols out here. And residents in La Sonata near Penn and Covell are encouraged to check home surveillance.

They want the culprit caught before vandalism and animal cruelty escalate to something much more sinister.