The hazards of not properly disposing of a fake body.
A U.K. woman was mortified after an errantly placed Halloween prop prompted a squad of 10 police officers to surround her home on the suspicion that she’d committed murder.
“I arrived home from the school run to see two police cars driving away from outside my house,” Bedfordshire’s Cara Louise, 28, told Triangle News of her near-arrest.
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The fiasco was sparked by a dummy wrapped in garbage bags and duct tape that the mother of two had used as a spooky decoration at a holiday kids’ party.
“My 5-year-old boy is really into dressing up for every occasion so we did the inside up with a circus theme and he dressed as It,” said Louise. “So the prop in the garden was part of our theme.”
Louise had kept the faux cadaver in the garden since November. However, the hairdresser had recently relocated the holiday holdover behind some garbage bins while gardening and forgot to put it back before picking up her elder son from school.
Go figure: The macabre prop sparked suspicion among Louise’s neighbors, who dialed the U.K. emergency number, 999, prompting a whopping 10 officers to descend upon the unsuspecting mother’s home.
Louise was aghast after arriving home to see that her house had become a crime scene. “I get out of the car to my neighbor standing there in which I ask jokingly, ‘What have you done?’” said the mortified mom. “Then I was told they [the cops] were all at my house as three people had called in to report a dead body.”
A Bedfordshire police spokesman later told the Daily Mail that they’d “received reports of what was believed to be a body bag in Houghton Regis.”
Thankfully, Louise was able to explain to the cops that she had, in fact, “not killed anyone,” she said.
All the while, her “5-year-old stood telling them how much he loves Halloween and we can’t get rid of the body because he loves it,” recalled the mom, adding that she promised to put the fake stiff “away in a secure place.”
Needless to say, both the cops and the neighbors saw the funny side of the situation, according to Louise.
She did recall asking the police how they could think the prop was a person with “legs that short.”
“You might have cut them,” was the police’s reported reply. “I said, ‘Oh, did you check my bins?’ she recounted, adding that “they looked a bit concerned and asked, ‘Should we?’ “
The flustered mother told them that “she was asked to chop it up and get rid of it” but had ultimately decided to “put him in the shed with the others until next Halloween.”
The gross misunderstanding made waves on social media, with one commenter quipping, “neighbors obviously thought you were capable of murder and dobbed you in,” using a slang term meaning turning in someone suspected of wrongdoing. “I wouldn’t speak to them anymore.”
“Did they actually check to ensure it wasn’t a body? Or was this the perfect crime?” joked another.
While Louise certainly saw the humor in the situation, she said she “has a tip for all parents who go all out at Halloween.”
“Dispose of props or put them away safely,” she warned.
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This isn’t the first time the cops have been called over graphic Halloween decor. A Texas man prompted multiple police visits after erecting a series of bloody holiday displays straight out of “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.”
To read more from the New York Post, click here.