Dead seal left in front of Providence home

By: Samantha Lavien

Twitter: @samanthalavien

A dead harp seal was found in a Providence neighborhood Monday morning with a handwritten note reading, Free Seal: to a good home, naps a lot, house broken.

Officials say the seal was dropped on Evergreen Avenue sometime between 11 pm Sunday night and 8 am Monday morning.

“We saw a bunch of police officers outside and our doorbell was being rung, we came outside and the police officers questioned us,” said Matthew Smith.

The seal was found in front of Smith's home. He says he has no idea who put it there, he doesn't think the animal was intended for him, but does believe it must have been some sort of prank.

“College hill is right over there, there's brown university and there's a bunch of other colleges you know a bunch of other kids dorm over here. It could have been anyone,” said Smith.

Neighbors say they are shocked that someone would do this.

“To know that it was a seal that they found on the east side of Providence is very jarring,” said neighbor Brittany Kosiba.

“It's terrible and bizarre and disgusting, I didn't see it but that's awful,” said neighbor Emily Forgarty.

“You know you are wondering what it is doing there, I had no idea. Where did it come from? I mean seals aren't around here,” said neighbor Donald Gerola.

The 65-pound seal was taken to Mystic Aquarium for a necropsy after it was discovered. Officials say they have determined it was dead before it was moved, adding that the seal was found stranded on a beach earlier and that they were able to identify it by a spot on its flipper.

Officials emphasize that even though the seal was dead, moving a marine animal is a federal crime.

The case is currently under investigation by NOAA Law Enforcement.