Stoneham police warn residents of ‘aggressive coyote’

The wild animal has reportedly bitten three people since Thursday.

Stoneham police alerted residents Sunday as they continued searching for a coyote that has bitten three people in the past week, including a woman who experienced minor injuries and required treatment at a nearby hospital.

All three incidents are reportedly linked to the same animal, and each happened at different locations along Montvale Avenue, including two outside the Stoneham Arena skating rink parking lot, and another at Extra Space Storage. Police said the Stoneham Oaks Golf Course behind the arena was closed to the public Sunday as an extra precaution while authorities continued to investigate.

Officers said the first attack happened around 8 p.m. Thursday outside the arena where the animal bit the back of a man’s shoe. But the coyote’s teeth, police added, didn’t puncture the material and the man was not injured. 

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About an hour later on the same evening near the self-storage facility, officers said another man reported being approached by a coyote that tugged at his pant leg, but did not bite him or cause any injuries. 

The coyote also reportedly bit a woman around 5:30 p.m. on Saturday in the arena parking lot. She experienced minor injuries, and officers said she sought medical assistance at a local hospital. 

Animal Control Officer Brian Johnston, alongside Stoneham police officers and Chief James McIntyre, searched for the coyote Saturday night in hopes of capturing the animal, but were unable to locate it. 

“This animal is clearly aggressive, and we urge residents to please be aware of this situation and report any sightings of this coyote to us promptly,” McIntyre said. “Above all else, please stay far away from this animal.”

He encouraged residents not to approach or try interacting with wildlife, including coyotes, to avoid leaving food outside, to keep a close eye on children playing outside, and to keep pets on-leash. 

Stoneham police also urged anyone who may have noticed the coyote to call 911 and report their sightings.

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