From The Times, May 31st 1983.
Two schoolboys believe they have had a face-to-face encounter with the so-called "Beast of Exmoor," which has killed more than eighty sheep and is being hunted by the Royal Marines.
Wayne Admas, aged 13, of North Molton, Devon, and Marcus White, aged 12, of Exwick, Exeter, were staying on an isolated farm in the heart of Exmoor when they saw a strange animal prowling near a flock of sheep on a common.
Wayne Adams said yesterday: "I looked over a gate and saw the animal about 10 yards away. It stared straight at me with bulging greeny eyes, just like a lion.
"It was jet black, apart from white markings down its chest, and had a head like an alsatian dog, but it was much too big to be a dog. It was over four foot high, and about 15 inches wide across the back.
"I was scared, and did not know what to do. I stayed on top of the gate and said to Marcus, 'There's the thing everyone is looking for', and it lolloped away. It moved like a cat, but I don't think it was a puma. We later found its footprints and claw mark."
Marcus White said: "It sort of pranced away. I did not see it for as long as Wayne, and I was not so frightened."
Mr[s] Mary Adams, Wayne's aunt, of Willingford Farm, Exford, where the boys were staying, said: "Whatever it was really frightened Wayne".
Police at Taunton, Somerset, said: "We are investigating a very large, alsatian-type dog which the boys saw about five miles away from the last attack on sheep".