The Essex lion farce
"Of course, despite this farcical affair, it doesn't explain the fact as to why for the last two-hundred or so years, peope have reported seeing large black cats, and slightly smaller puma-like cats around Ongar Marshes, Epping Forest, Brentwood etc. It also doesn't explain that in the last week I've received 11 reports of black leopard from various parts of Kent and Sussex and none of these were investigated by police helicopters."
Perhaps folk have been claiming to see large predatory cats for the the last 200 years CAN be explained - they were all mistaken just like the people in this current example.
Misidentifications and hysteria do occur - perhaps we should be seeking to understand why and under what circumstances they occur? Perhaps we can actually learn something from this case rather than dismiss it as nonsense...