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Residents rattled after reporting chupacabra sightings in mountains of Riverside County

On a foggy morning more than a week ago, Cary Shuker’s cat raced inside his Riverside home, terrified of something outside. “This thing was standing out there, looking at me” said Shuker, a private contractor who lives at the base of Box Springs Mountain, which divides Moreno Valley and Riverside. “It was the ugliest looking thing.” Shuker said the hairless creature, glaring at him about 80 or 90 feet away, had a tail like a rat or a possum, with rippled pinkish skin, teeth jutting both up and down out of its jaws and was “at least two feet or more longer than the biggest coyote you’ve ever seen.” “I yelled at it, in a big deep voice, ‘get out of here!’” Shuker said. The creature turned and snarled at him, before stalking off. Before it vanished, it turned back toward Shuker, snarling and chattering one more time. “It was cussing me out, basically. … I stole its breakfast. It was hunting my cat,” Shuker said. “This wasn’t no coyote, by any means.” In the rocky Box Springs Mountain territory, residents say they believe that the strange wild animal they’ve encountered since the beginning of the year is the legendary chupacabra. “I thought, ‘That is the strangest looking animal I’ve ever seen,’” said M.J. Blunt, a retired child development consultant.

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