MARYVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – A Blount County woman was seriously injured Monday afternoon in an attack by a white-tailed buck outside a business in Maryville.
The woman was getting mail outside of U.S. Tanx in Maryville just before 1 p.m. Monday when the deer came up behind her and slammed into her back knocking her to the ground. The deer then circled around her and began goring her with its antlers.
The woman shielded herself from further injury and latched on to the deer’s antlers. The deer then drug her around and continued the attack. Three unknown bystanders assisted the woman as the deer continued to drag and injure her, but were eventually able to separate the deer and get her to safety.
The victim was transported to Blount Co. Memorial Hospital where she is being treated for serious injuries.
Wildlife officers responded to the area and located the deer at a residence near the attack. The deer was wearing an orange collar around its neck and officers observed it acting unnaturally humanized. The officers immobilized the deer, removed it from the residence and euthanized it at another location.
A criminal investigation is ongoing but preliminary information suggests the deer was raised by humans from a very young age and unnaturally humanized. The white-tailed deer was about a 1-1/2-old, four-point buck weighing approximately 75 pounds.
The Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency says they see several situations where deer become aggressive towards humans, oftentimes women when rutting activity begins. This same rutting activity is also responsible for the uptick in deer versus vehicle collisions in the fall as deer are more mobile during the breeding season.