Police defend white deer shooting in the street in Bootle | Liverpool

Merseyside Police have responded to public criticism of their decision to shoot a marauding deer by saying police are ’empty’ of having to pull the trigger.

The unusual white fallow deer was killed by police on Sunday evening after spending nine hours through downtown Bootle, despite animal welfare experts urging officers to let him return home.

The RSPCA said it had advised police to “leave the deer behind because it would make its way home on its own.”

Merseyside Police said an officer killed the male to protect motorists, cyclists and pedestrians, and it was only after several attempts to tranquilize the animal that failed.

The force defended its decision, with a senior officer saying he was proud of the officers involved.

Deputy Chief Constable Ian Critchley said in a press release: “I want to bring absolute clarity on the tremendous efforts our staff are making to save the deer which was clearly in distress and out of control on Sunday.

“At the heart of our decisions, there was first of all the safety of the public, and the risk that a deer in distress in a built environment presents to motorists, cyclists, pedestrians. But the deer itself was also central to the decisions we made, as such from the start the goal was to calm and move the deer safely to a rural environment.

“Along with the advice of a local veterinarian, attempts of more than nine hours were made to tranquilize the deer and a rural location was identified for safe transfer, to minimize further distress and to ensure its safety. security.

“Despite several tranquilizer darts successfully deployed in the deer, it failed to put the animal to sleep.”

He continued, “At 6:35 pm, after further discussion with the vet and the animal still in considerable distress, and with the light fading, the really difficult decision had to be made to destroy the deer. .

“All of the officers at the scene were absolutely disgusted that they had to shoot the animal. The officers had been engaged for nine hours during the incident and had actively tried to capture the deer for over five hours, so they were completely determined to move the animal. However, we had to make sure that a deer in distress posed no danger to public safety.

“I respect people who will have different views, but I can categorically say that every effort was made to save and relocate the deer and I am proud of all of my officers who were involved in this difficult and challenging incident. “

This article was last modified on October 1, 2021. An earlier version described the deer in the text and title as a “rare white deer”. Fallow deer are unusual, but not uncommon, and males are traditionally referred to as males, not deer.

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