LAMOINE — A Cottontail Lane resident who operates a rabbit rescue operation here called police Wednesday after a stranger uncovered a rabbit puppet and pretended to make it talk.
“She was traumatized,” said Deputy Shane Campbell.
Campbell arrived on the scene eight minutes after the woman called 911 to find her huddled in an upstairs bedroom with her children. The suspect, a 66-year-old man, was outside the home, appearing dumbfounded.
“He couldn’t understand why I was there,” the deputy said.
According to Campbell, the man showed up at the home, which sits in a wooded area a couple of hundred yards off the Shore Road, saying he wanted to adopt a rabbit for his grandchild. As he and the shelter operator walked to where the rabbits are kept, he pulled a rabbit-like hand puppet from under the towel he was carrying and began to make it talk.
“He said something like, ‘Hi rabbit lady. I’d like to adopt another rabbit,’” Campbell said.
The woman didn’t stick around to hear more.
“She simply freaked out,” Campbell said. The woman ran into the house, locked the door and called for help.
Meanwhile, the man, who Campbell said had no idea why the woman had run into the house, was expecting her to come back out and had approached the home and called out to her.
“He couldn’t understand why I was there,” Campbell said.
The man, who Campbell characterized as “naïve,” apologized to the woman, saying he thought he was ”being cute.” Campbell, after doing a quick psychiatric evaluation, explained otherwise.
“I made it extremely clear that his actions weren’t normal,” the deputy said.
The man, who lives in Lamoine, was warned for criminal trespass and harassment. He is to have no contact with the woman, a condition Campbell thinks the man readily will comply with.
“I don’t feel he’ll ever go back,” the deputy said.