Seamus makes a right pig of himself

Police have decided not to press charges against a juvenile runaway who narrowly avoided becoming Christmas lunch - twice.

The first escapade occurred on Christmas Eve, when the only creature stirring on Rattray St, in Dunedin, was a juvenile male kunekune named Seamus.

Constable Ben West spotted the pig being looked after by some teenagers, who had helped him across the busy road and on to the Arthur St Reserve just after 1pm on Monday.

As the pig was content to chomp and root up grass, Dunedin City Council animal control officers were contacted to collect the seemingly tame animal while police officers secured him.

''He definitely resisted arrest,'' Senior Constable Trevor Buchanan told the Otago Daily Times at the scene.

He later added Seamus could have also faced charges of assaulting a police officer, after he kicked out at Senior Constable Kath Goodman. Other offences included ripping up the park's grass and defecating in public.

Gotcha ... Senior Constables Trevor Buchanan and Kath Goodman detain Seamus, a juvenile male...
Gotcha ... Senior Constables Trevor Buchanan and Kath Goodman detain Seamus, a juvenile male kunekune pig, after he was spotted grazing in a Dunedin central park on Christmas Eve. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery
The pig declined to comment, but was clearly distressed after being hogtied by the three officers before a 30-minute wait for animal control.

The trio - assisted by Constable Lachlan McDonald - lifted Seamus into the back of the animal control van, despite squeals of protest from the alleged offender.

''Given it's Christmas, we have decided to take a lenient view on the pig,'' Senior Sergeant Steve Aitken said.

Seamus' owners came and collected him about an hour later.

The mayhem was repeated yesterday about 6.30pm when the pig was seen ''munching'' someone's garden in Elm Row and police were again called.

This time, his owners were called to retrieve Seamus, who had managed both his escapes thanks to the gate to his home being left open.

''He's very much a pet pig. He goes in the car and they take him for walks on the beach,'' Dunedin City Council animal control team leader Ros MacGill said.


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