Massachusetts Man Covers Razor Blades in Peanut Butter in Attempt to Bait Park Animals, Gets Arrested

A Massachusetts man has been arrested after allegedly trying to injure animals by using peanut butter bait that contained razor blades, police say.

The suspect, identified as M. Brian McGrath, 43, of East Falmouth, was detained on August 31 after investigators received a tip-off regarding his behavior. He had been trying to use the bait to attract wildlife to the area, according to the Massachusetts Environmental Police.

During surveillance last month, officers from the Marine and Environmental Services said they spotted McGrath baiting the tree and watching as animals were lured in. Authorities captured evidence that squirrels came into contact with the razor blade while attempting to feed.

The incident took place inside Falmouth's Goodwill Park. According to an investigator statement that was published to Facebook, the man was seen "regularly" baiting animals. It remains unclear how many time he is believed to have set up such peanut butter trappings.

Officers said they removed razors after numerous young children were spotted in the area. Authorities said a search of Goodwill Park did not turn up any more baiting stations.

In late August of 2019, Massachusetts Environmental Police conducted a brief joint investigation with Falmouth Marine...

Posted by Massachusetts Environmental Police on Saturday, August 31, 2019

McGrath, whose address was listed as Happy Hollow Road, is now being charged with animal cruelty, reckless behavior creating a risk of serious bodily injury and injuries to trees.

According to Massachusetts Environmental Police, the man was released on bail after his weekend arrest and is scheduled to be arraigned today in Falmouth District Court.

One image recently posted to social media by the state's environmental services department showed the suspect caught in the act, seemingly setting up a tree trap. A second image showed the bait itself, with a large razor blade clearly seen protruding from the food paste. The update has attracted more than 1,200 comments and 1,300 shares on Facebook alone.

Commenters expressed disgust at the news, and praised the police for apprehending McGrath. "Thank you for catching this person and stopping the cruelty," one person wrote. Another user added: "Punishment for animal cruelty should be way more severe. These are living beings."

In Massachusetts, animal cruelty carries potential penalties of up to seven years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000 upon conviction. The sentencing for a second animal cruelty offense is up to 10 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine, according to Chelmsford-based legal outfit Oberhauser Law.

It warns: "Under Massachusetts laws, animal cruelty offenses are charged as felonies... If you are convicted of animal cruelty in Massachusetts, you face serious punishment at sentencing."

To report suspected animal cruelty anywhere in the state of Massachusetts you can contact the MSPCA via (617) 522-6008 or (800) 628-5808. It is open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m.–5 p.m.