Insta-famous cat stolen by Uber passengers
A famed cat with hundreds of followers on Instagram and a cult following in the community has allegedly been abducted.
Abercrombie Charlie, a short haired maine coon cross was seen being taken by two rideshare passengers just doors from his home in Redfern.
The 11-year-old cat is owned by local resident Lou Shackleton, who was in Melbourne celebrating her birthday when neighbours called to tell her about the incident.
She was told that Abercrombie Charlie, who was catapulted to fame with his viral Instagram page, was sitting on the street metres down from his home when the incident occurred.
Neighbours told her two passengers - who were not recognised by residents - were seen exiting what was later identified as an Uber vehicle and pulling him into their car.
The passengers were described as a man and a woman of Asian appearance, one man wearing a black hoodie and a woman wearing a red shirt.
The incident has left the community mourning, with hundreds of people taking to social media to express their grief.
Ms Shackleton, who described the cat as "an institution" in the area said that incident has been "devastating."
"I literally feel sick - my head has been dull throbbing - the only thing keeping me sane is that we do have a driver ID. I just want it acted on."
Police have identified the Uber driver and are investigating the incident.
Ms Shackleton said the cat moves to and from houses up the street, sleeping in neighbours beds and even visiting the pub - making him an icon in the community.
"He keeps us all connected - we all communicate via his Instagram. Got people who try to sit with him everyday, bring biscuits. He's very unique."
Abercrombie Charlie wasn't wearing a collar at the time of the incident but is fitted with a microchip, Ms Shackleton said.
The incident may very well have been an "honest mistake," Ms Shackleton said, because he "does wander around the street."
"He's very well-known so I'm just hoping it's an honest mistake but I really don't think so."
Ms Shackleton is urging anyone with information to come forward.
"I just want him back and whole neighbourhood wants him back and want to say thanks to the hundreds of people who've been supportive."
"We are just desperate, he is sorely missed."