Deputy responds to groundhog blocking traffic by fatally shootin - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Deputy responds to groundhog blocking traffic by fatally shooting it when it refuses to run off

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KHQ.COM - A Deputy in Carroll County, Maryland is drawing a lot of criticism for the way he responded to a groundhog blocking traffic Monday morning. He fatally shot the groundhog and it was all captured on video posted to Facebook. 

The video on Facebook shows traffic stopped in both directions. The woman recording is initially laughing at the hilarity of the situation as she watches the deputy try to usher the groundhog off the roadway. But when the ground hog suddenly starts to run towards the deputy, he takes out his gun and shoots the animal, wounding it. He then shoots the animal one more time to put it out of its misery before walking back to his patrol car.

The Sheriff's Office said in a statement, saying, "He realized that it was not responding as expected for an animal that was not being cornered or trapped. Believing the groundhog to be either sick or injured, the deputy then put the animal down for the public’s safety."

Multiple witnesses who watched the incident contacted 11 News in Maryland with concerns over how the deputy handled the situation.

The station spoke with the executive director of the Carroll County Humane Society, Karen Baker, who confirmed the animal's behavior was unusual and said animals usually run away from humans unless their sick or injured.

Baker also spoke about how to safely respond to an animal that comes after you saying, "get to safety, don't turn your back to the animal. Try and keep something in front of you. If there's lawn furniture and you can grab a pillow, if you're walking and you have a bag or backpack, you want to make sure you put that in front of you, give the animal something else to focus on or to bite other than yourself."

We do not have licensing rights to show the video in our own video player but you can click on this Facebook link to watch the video yourself: https://tinyurl.com/y7zm5bu6

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