What was it? Man talks about ‘Minerva Monster’ mystery 40 years later

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MINERVA, Ohio-- A Minerva man is breaking his silence about a strange creature after nearly 40 years.

“You’re the first we’ve talked to since,” said Howe Cayton, sitting down with FOX 8 News reporter Suzanne Stratford.

Howe was just a teenager in 1978, growing up with his parents and six siblings in a home on Lincoln Street.

Right behind the house was an old strip mine.

“We’d play hide and seek,” said Howe. “It was just a playground for us kids.”

Until August, when he says someone or something started throwing rocks at their roof.

At first they thought it was a prankster, but Howe said soon things became aggressive.

There was pounding on the windows, and a large rock struck their neighbor in the face.

However, the most upsetting attack involved their pet German Shepherd.

“She got scared, dug a tunnel in the ground about 6 ft deep,” said Howe, “Where some thing broke her neck.”

It became known as the Minerva Monster.

Although it was never located, the events that unfolded that summer continue to baffle even veteran law enforcement investigators.

“They were terrified,” said Cpt. Jim Shannon, retired Stark County Sheriff's Dept. “I will always believe them, that they saw something ...it’s just what did they see?!”

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