In El Paso County, Colorado, a reserve sheriff’s deputy named Chuck Zukowski has apparently been fired because of his avocation for conducting investigations of UFOs, Bigfoot and cattle mutilations in his off-hours. Technically, Zukowski was terminated last month for “contradicting and being critical of official Sheriff’s Office investigations in a public forum,” but it seems pretty obvious his paranormal investigations themselves were the chief problemo. According to a story by Alan Prendergast on Denver’s Westword:
Zukowski’s offense? Telling Fox 31 reporter Heidi Hemmat on camera that local law enforcement “really isn’t trained to look at something like this” — “this” being a baffling case of horse mutilation last summer at a ranch an hour east of Colorado Springs. The official El Paso County investigation concluded that predators were at fault. But Zukowski points out that most police officers have a week or less of training on animal deaths, while he’s spent many hours in the field and with veterinarians at Colorado State University learning how to distinguish predator activity from other types of wounds.
His termination letter suggests Zukowski encouraged journalists to identify him as a representative of the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office. But Zukowski denies that he’s ever done that; Hemmat’s report, for example, lists him as an independent paranormal investigator. His bio on his website, ufonut.com, proudly notes that he spent eight years as a volunteer reserve officer while working primarily as an engineering consultant and microchip designer.
“I put a lot of faith in the media,” Zukowski says, “and I tell them I don’t represent law enforcement.”
Unexplained mutilations of livestock are thought by many paranormal investigators to be related to the alien abduction phenomenon, since mutilations reportedly seem to occur in the vicinity of reported abductions and UFO sightings. This series of mutilations occurred in Rush, Colorado, and have some pretty bizarre reports attached to them. According to the UFO Nut post on the Rush mutilation case:
Fact! Two horses found mutilated on August 11th, 2010.
Fact! Two surviving animals, one horse, one dog found with unknown marks.
Fact! High electro-magnetic field readings measured on surviving dog.
Fact! Strange “whooshing” sound heard by wife of rancher two days before mutilations. During the day time!
What happened in the peaceful area of Rush Colorado one hour east of Colorado Springs? What happened on a dark moon-less night of Tuesday, August 10th ? What caused the mysterious “whooshing” sounds heard by the rancher’s wife Glenda, on Sunday afternoon August 8th? What caused the unusual markings on two surviving animals after the incident? Well, these were the questions the UFOnut investigative team set out to try to understand. Interviewing eyewitnesses, investigating the actual mutilation sites, checking the welfare of the slightly injured animals, and collecting data, these were our tasks at hand. And now these are our notes being released to you!
Two horses were mutilated and killed in the back pasture on this particular ranch. One named “Princess”, a one year old Paint horse, and another named “Buck”, a four year old Rocky Mountain horse. Two other animals were found alive with unusual markings on them, a yearling named, “King”, and the pet dog named, “Cody”. All three horses, Princess, Buck, and King, were fed grain with apple treats. No unusual diets which would single them out from the rest of the animals.
Chuck Zukowski’s other avocational investigatory activities include looking into Bigfoot sightings in Colorado. He worked about 200 hours a year as a reserve Sheriff’s deputy for El Paso County. There’s lots more about him at UFO Nut, but here’s Prendergast again:
[Zukowski has] appeared on several programs on the Sci-Fi (now SyFy) Channel dealing with Roswell, but he’s also done a series of videos of his own, dealing with everything from mutilation cases to ghosts to an alleged sasquatch stomping around Bailey. Zukowski says one sort of investigation leads to another: “Before you know it, you’re branching out.”
Talking to people upset about alien abductions or disemboweled livestock made him a better cop, he says, and helped teach him how to de-escalate emotional situations. “I’ve been more scared doing UFO and ghost investigations than with anything I’ve encountered in the sheriff’s office,” he says.
Check out the now former reserve deputy talking about Bigfoot investigations here: