At Belmont Harbor, a man cried ‘coyote,’ so the cops checked it out

A statue fooled onlookers and police before officers determined the plastic coyote wasn’t a threat.

SHARE At Belmont Harbor, a man cried ‘coyote,’ so the cops checked it out
Coyote statue on the pier near Dock T at Belmont Harbor.

Not a coyote, but it plays one at Belmont Harbor, where it is supposed to scare off birds, not fool onlookers.

Colin Boyle/For the Sun-Times

Chicago’s coyote craze had a boy-who-cried-wolf moment over the weekend, but instead of an imaginary wolf, it was a statue of a coyote at Belmont Harbor in Lake View.

A concerned citizen spotted what he thought was a coyote standing at Dock T about 11 a.m. Sunday.

He then called the Chicago Police Department, hoping they could dispatch Animal Control.

Chicago residents have been on the lookout for coyotes in the city after two incidents last week; a boy was bitten several times by a coyote near the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum in Lincoln Park, and a man reported to police that he’d been bitten by a coyote in the Gold Coast.

Sunday’s reported sighting, then, brought a CPD van and four squad cars to the scene. The caller already had flagged down a freelance photojournalist who was working on a student project with a classmate.

With binoculars in hand — and the assistance of the photographer’s zoom lens — the officers determined they weren’t dealing with a bonafide coyote, but with a statue, which is typically used to scare off birds.

The officers called off Animal Control and shared a good laugh as they departed the scene, which had attracted a few onlookers from the nearby Lakefront Trail.

A Chicago Police officer checks out a reported coyote sighting at Belmont Harbor.

A Chicago Police officer checks out a reported coyote sighting at Belmont Harbor. It turned out to be a statue of a coyote out by Dock T.

Colin Boyle/For the Sun-Times

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