FOREST LAKE, Minn., Jan. 17 (UPI) — A Minnesota couple says they’re outraged police shot and killed two deer that had been living in their yard for seven months.
Jeff Carpenter of Forest Lake, about 30 miles northeast of Minneapolis, said he and his wife, LeeAnn, had been caring for the deer and he was shocked Saturday when he went outside to investigate a loud noise and found police had killed the animals, the St. Paul (Minn.) Pioneer-Press reported Tuesday.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources said the Carpenters had put collars on the deer, which marked them as domesticated and and made them a potential health threat to wild animals. Animals in captivity have a higher rate of disease, Capt. Greg Salo, regional supervisor for the DNR’s enforcement division, told the newspaper.
Salo said there had been reports in recent weeks of two deer with collars roaming the area. Officials said local deer farms had not reported any missing animals.
“If he had contacted us, I think we could have corrected the problem without having to destroy them,” Salo said. “The minute he took them as fawns and put collars on them, he sealed their fate.”
Carpenter said officials made no attempts to contact him before police officers shot the deer.
“This could have been handled a hundred different ways, and every other way would have been better,” Carpenter said.