Massachusetts

Police Say ‘Trip Wires' Under Investigation on Midstate Trail Were Electric Dog Fencing

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Two days after asking for the public's help investigating "trip lines" they said had been placed on the Midstate Trail, police in Spencer, Massachusetts, now say the wires were electric dog fencing on someone's property.

The Spencer Police Department put out a photo Monday, saying in a Facebook post that "someone has been placing trip-lines across segments of the Mid State Trail." Wednesday, police said the case had been "solved."

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"According to the Midstate Trail Maintainer Supervisor - the alleged hiker 'trip wire' was actually a yellow strand of electric dog fencing lying flat across the trail placed there by the property owner," police said in a new post. "The property owner added that countless hikers have crossed the fencing without issue."

But hiker Sarah Gates of Leominster, who saw the line after tripping over it Sunday afternoon, said it was not flat across the trail.

"It was probably four to five inches off the ground, ankle-height," she told NBC10 Boston Monday.

She said spotting the yellow rope was unnerving.

"When I realized what this was, I just kind of wanted to get out of there," she said. "It freaked me out, and I wanted to get away from it."

"That could really hurt somebody," said Megan Veroneau of Spencer. "That's messed up."

When police were still investigating Monday, they said that parts of the trail are very remote, and getting help fast could be a problem if someone falls down and gets hurt.

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