A Delaware deer survived being struck by a car with such an impact that it was, well, a deer caught in headlights, only to dodge a poacher’s gunshots upon release.
Miraculously, the deer was uninjured in both incidents.
A driver struck the lucky buck at about 9 p.m. Saturday on Route 9 near Rodgers Manor, said police. The deer became lodged in the front grill and the motorist drove the deer, still stuck inside the bumper, to New Castle Police headquarters.
Police and the Delaware SPCA tranquilized the creature and removed it from the front of the car. Officers then brought the slumbering deer to the area of Quigly Farm and waited for it to wake up.
Once the deer was awake, police stood by on the dirt road making sure that the deer was alert enough to run into the woods safely. Suddenly a white SUV pulled up to the shoulder of the road, and police heard gunshots “whizzing” past their vehicle.
Thinking the driver of the SUV was shooting at them, police pursued the vehicle and arrested the driver an hour later, said Lt. Adam Brams. In the man’s car they found two shotguns, 20 shotgun rounds and three spent rounds, all of which he illegally possessed. The man also had night vision binoculars.
The 31-year-old told police he was trying to shoot the just-released deer -- not the officers, said Brams.
Police arrested Victor L. Bryson of New Castle on charges of two counts reckless endangerment, two counts possession of a firearm by a person prohibited, possession of ammunition by a person prohibited and driving with a suspended license.
Bryson is being held at the Young Correctional Facility on $34,000 bond, pending preliminary hearing.
The deer is prancing around the woods unharmed, pending its next encounter with cars and poachers.