MARLIN, Texas (AP) — The mayor of a small Central Texas town found dozens of dog carcasses illegally dumped on city property and police were investigating Tuesday how they died and who dumped them.

Marlin Mayor Elizabeth Nelson found the dump site near City Park while following up on a tip that men were shooting stray dogs and dumping the bodies near a stream, according a report published in the Marlin Democrat on Tuesday. The place where the carcasses were found is used by public works employees to dispose of landscaping debris, Nelson said.

Falls County does not have an animal shelter and stray dogs are a serious problem in Marlin.

She said investigators were looking into allegations that city employees had killed the dogs, but said residents may have been dumping remains of pets.

Police found Friday what appeared to be dozens of scattered dog skeletons and seven recent remains of dogs tied up in plastic bags. Nelson said she could not provide an accurate count.

“It was obvious that dead dogs have been being dumped on city property for some time,” Nelson said.

Acting Marlin Police Chief John Cornish did not respond to repeated phone calls requesting comment on the case.

Nelson said at a minimum those responsible for the carcasses were guilty of illegal dumping.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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