The internet was closed to meltdown last night, after footage of a man calmly killing a pig in what looks like a brightly lit factory was posted on YouTube. Police have appealed for calm after torch-bearing mobs gathered outside the alleged perpetrator's house in the West Midlands.
'I've never seen anything so ghastly,' sobbed Tricia Reynolds, a 34-year old receptionist from Newbury. 'First he appears to electrocute it by holding headphones to its ears, then he slits the poor thing's throat and then he hangs its body upside down on a chain. What kind of society are we living in?'
The grainy film, which was taken on CCTV cameras, closes in on a man in his twenties, widely named on the internet as Darren Brown, wearing bloodstained overalls. This has led many to suspect there are more victims. He then cold-bloodedly destroys the helpless animal. In the background, some letters in the window spell the words 'Wholesale Meats'.
While pressure growing on the government to carry out a full public enquiry on the one hand, the other has seen a raft of jokes sweeping the online community, calling the demonstrators 'pig sick' and 'high on the hog'. However, the general feeling is one of fury and Brown's family has asked for police protection.
'It's appalling to think that such things happen today. Perhaps I shouldn't have looked but everyone's been talking about it,' said Terry Connor, 29, from Maidstone. 'Only one word for what he did: sheer butchery. Put me right off my bacon sarnies it did.'