Man puts deer on leash, upsets Kentucky wildlife officials
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A post of a young deer on Facebook has started a social media firestorm.
Many people in Louisville are upset after photos and videos of a man with a deer on a leash started popping up online.
Kentucky Fish and Wildlife officials said what's happening is illegal and they are investigating.
"I'll be honest with you, it infuriated me," Brigette Brouillard, the Executive Director of Second Chances Wildlife, said. "It infuriated me on several different levels."
It's the post that started it all -- photos of a man with a young deer under his arm, and on a leash at Louisville's Park Hill housing complex. Wildlife officials and educators said it's a highly questionable and illegal act.
Brouillard said she is certain the deer is scared and in danger.
"I'm sure this guy who has it has no idea what to even feed the deer, so it's just bad all around," she said.
Facebook videos came next. Posters claim the man wanted money to pet the fawn. That led to so many complaints, Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Conservation Officer Christian Casper headed to Park Hill to try and find it.
"A couple of people had seen it," Casper said.
He did not find the deer, but shortly after, photos of it started showing up on social media again, this time with its own Facebook page: "Parkhill Bambi."
It ranges from a post of the deer in the driver's seat of a semi, to an offer to sell it for $500.
"It's definitely an arrestable offense," Casper said.
The Louisville Housing Authority told WAVE 3 News the man is not a resident at Park Hill.
It is fawn season right now, keeping wildlife educators and rehabilitation experts like those at Second Chances Wildlife busy for more reasons than just Park Hill Bambi.
"In an hour and a half time span," Brouillard said, "I received five, or six phone calls regarding fawn."
On neighborhood apps like Nextdoor, we found people asking what they should do when they find fawn or other animal babies in odd spots or in their yards who seem to be alone.
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"They might be in a flower garden, next to someone's driveway or in the middle of your front yard," Brouillard said. "That's where mom chose to place her baby and that is where baby is supposed to stay."
She said the animal is not abandoned, so leave it alone. But if people have questions, they can call Second Chances Wildlife Center or head to their website for information on what to do.
Meanwhile, the person with Park Hill Bambi could also face fines up to $1,000.
Anyone who has any information in that case is asked to call Kentucky Fish and Wildlife at the Kentucky State Police Post 4 at (270) 766-5078. Ask for the conservation officer.
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