Vandals 'behead' dinosaurs at Canberra museum

SYDNEY • Three model raptors at Australia's national dinosaur museum have been "beheaded" by mystery vandals who scaled a fence and removed the parts using an angle grinder or hacksaw, police said yesterday.

The damage to the dinosaurs - which were in an outside display area - took place late last Saturday at the museum in Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, police said.

"The damage sustained to the (three velociraptor) dinosaurs indicate that an angle grinder or hacksaw was used to remove the head from the body," they said.

"The offenders had climbed a four-foot (1.2m) high fence to gain entry," museum staff member Mitchell Seymour told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). He added that the damaged dinosaurs were first spotted by visitors, with children puzzled over what had happened.

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"We went out to check it out and three of our dinosaurs here had been decapitated. We had heaps of kids coming up and going, 'Oh Mum and Dad, what's wrong with the dinosaurs?'

"It's selfish and thoughtless," he said.

A giant fibreglass dinosaur was stolen from the museum in 2013 and later found in the home of a man who said it was taken as a birthday prank, ABC reported.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 09, 2017, with the headline 'Vandals 'behead' dinosaurs at Canberra museum'. Print Edition | Subscribe