By Michael Abeyta

AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) — Aurora police are hunting for someone who sounds like they should be in a Western Movie– a cattle rustler. A herd of cattle disappeared from the Wooters Heart Ranch on Wednesday night.

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(CBS)

When you think of the types of crimes committed in Aurora, Colorado’s third largest city, cattle rustling may not be at the top of your list. But that’s exactly what happened to Ray Wooters. He owns a cattle ranch in north east Aurora.

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Wednesday night he was getting ready for bed when he got a call from Aurora police. They told him 50 head were spotted at Gun Club and E-470 being led by a pair on horseback.

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“And I thought, ‘No way could they be mine,’” he said.

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That’s quite a distance away from his ranch, so he went to bed. The next day he found a surprise.

“I went to feed them and they’re all gone.”

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The rustlers took the herd from the intersection of Powhatan and Jewell Avenue where they had been hanging out. Ray immediately started tracking them by hoof print.

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That trail lead him straight to where police saw the cattle the night before.

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“We’ve had a lot of people on Facebook commenting that we saw them crossing the road up there. We lost their tracks at that point so we have no idea where they are.”

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He estimates they are worth about $75,000. All of his cows are branded with a heart shape and have a freeze brand number that cannot be removed.

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Ray has notified all the local sales houses to be on the lookout and APD is investigating, but he has a simple request for the rustlers, “Bring ‘em back!”

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(credit: CBS)

Michael Abeyta is a 4th generation Coloradan and a Multimedia Journalist for CBS4. His stories can be seen on CBS4 News at 5 & 6. He is on Twitter! Follow him @AbeytaCBS4.

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