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OFFBEAT

Toddler found out alone while mother parties

A three-year-old boy was found wandering round the town of Valence, near Lyon, and his one-year-old brother was left home alone while his mother was at a party this weekend.

Toddler found out alone while mother parties
File image of the Kiosque Peynet in Valence (Photo: Kvardek du)

The little boy was found walking down the side of a road in the town wearing just some underpants and a t-shirt by a motorist who took him to a police station on Saturday night, newspaper La Depeche reports.

The mother turned up drunk at the station in the early hours of the morning to report her son missing. Police arrested her immediately.

It was only when the father returned home a few hours later that it was discovered their one-year-old son had been left home alone too.

A spokesperson for the local police said: “The couple had argued, and the man left, leaving the mother alone with the two children. The mother decided to go party anyway.

“We still don’t know how the boy managed to open the door to get out.”

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OFFBEAT

France’s mystery rooftop panther stolen from zoo

A black panther rescued from rooftops near the northern city of Lille last week has been stolen from the zoo where it was taken after capture, officials said.

France's mystery rooftop panther stolen from zoo
Photo: AFP/ Sapeurs Pompiers du Nord

The feline was seized overnight from the zoo in Maubeuge near the Belgian border, the city's mayor, Arnaud Decagny, told AFP on Tuesday.

“This animal was the only target,” Decagny said, adding that “considerable efforts” were made to force locks and avoid security systems.

Zoo personnel are worried about the young panther's health, “which is rather delicate because he lacks strength,” the mayor added, saying the animal was just a few months old and weighed between 25 and 30kg.

The panther after its capture. Photo League Protectrice des Animaux de la Nord de France/AFP

The panther was going to be transferred to a centre specialised in rehabilitating wild animals that had been domesticated.

Firefighters caught the cat last Wednesday as it roamed rooftops in Armentieres after escaping through the window of a private apartment believed to have been its home.

The panther's owner is thought to have escaped through the same window, for fear of being charged with illegally harbouring a wild animal.

Police have not located the fugitive owner, who could face charges of endangering the public, which is punishable by up to a year in prison and €15,000 in fines, Decagny said.

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