Woman calls police after spotting ‘human toe’ that turns out to be potato

A dog walker called police out to investigate a muddy potato she mistook for being a human toe.

Katie Wilkinson, 26, sent Northumbria Police a photo of the scene in a field in Winlaton, Gateshead, which officers agreed looked like it could be a human toe.

A team of response officers and specialist police dogs were sent to the field to locate the suspected toe, only to find a baby potato growing beside a mushroom.

Katie said: "When I was walking through the second field I was just watching the ground and there were about four inches of mud and I didn't want to slip over.

"While walking I saw something sticking out from the ground and I immediately thought it looked like a toe.

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"I bent down to get a bit closer and to take a photo. I thought surely it can't be a toe, it must just be a really weird looking plant or something.

"I just couldn't stop thinking about it. It was just going round and round in my head that it could have been a toe.

"It could have been severed from someone's foot or it could still be attached to a body."

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After showing a picture of the potato to friends who told Katie it was "definitely a toe", the dog owner called 101.

Northumbria Police said: "Eventually, officers tracked down the 'scene' only to discover the toe was in fact a potato with a mushroom growing next to it."

Inspector Phil Hamlani said the call was made in good faith and he encouraged others to report anything suspicious – even if it does turn out to be a vegetable.

He said: "The person who called this in was very concerned, and in the picture she sent to us the object did look like it could be human remains.

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"It was already dark by the time we got a call and so we had to deploy search teams to track down the scene to rule out any foul play.

"The search team did have a chuckle when they realised it was a potato but the call was made in good faith and we can only praise the vigilance of the woman who made the call.

"If anyone does come across suspected human remains, please do the same and give us a call.

"If it does turn out to be a vegetable, our police dogs will thank you for the treat!"

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