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They Don’t Only Shoot Them: Sheriff’s Deputy Bret Wood Saves Raccoon Stuck in Tree

| December 13, 2013

The raccoon somehow got its paws stuck

The raccoon somehow got its paws stuck

The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office took quite a bit of flack earlier this year for being too quick to shoot raccoons that appeared to be in distress rather than aiding them. One resident of Palm Coast’s R-Section was so distressed by one such incident that she wrote the sheriff, prompting a discussion and a reply from the Sheriff’s Office, which re-examined its approach of animals in distress.

Friday morning, it was a different story. The Sheriff’s Office released this account this afternoon: “Flagler County Sheriff’s deputies wrangled a raccoon rescue Friday morning after a young raccoon got stuck in a tree on Florida Park Drive in Palm Coast. The errant animal owes the rescue to the keen eye of a 12-year-old boy who spied the stranded raccoon as he was walking to his bus stop around 7 a.m. this morning.” The raccoon was hanging upside down, according to reports to 911.

“The small raccoon had managed to get his back right leg wedged between two large branches of a crape myrtle tree. When Animal Control could not respond Deputy Bret Wood arrived on the scene and used a car jack from his patrol car to separate the branches far enough apart to free the animal’s leg. The raccoon was aggressive toward Wood, but no one was injured.”

And no Tasers were used to calm the animal. Rather, in an effort to encourage the animal to escape the tree, Deputy Daniel Parthemore stepped in and gently lifted the raccoon’s leg with his extendable baton.

“The raccoon then departed the area and appeared to be in good health,” Wood said. The sheriff’s release also notes that “after being freed from the three the raccoon looked back as if saying ‘thank you’ to its rescuers as it departed the area.”

The raccoon's stuck paw before it was freed. (FCSO)

The raccoon’s stuck paw before it was freed. (FCSO)

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11 Responses for “They Don’t Only Shoot Them: Sheriff’s Deputy Bret Wood Saves Raccoon Stuck in Tree”

  1. Diana L says:

    Thank you. All of our residents need to be treated with respect. This goes a long way in teaching our population that we can trust our officers to do the right thing.

  2. Geezer says:

    My favorite Palm Coasters are the animals.

    I’ve never had any differences with them, and they never surreptitiously
    call code enforcement on me.
    They never drive aggressively.
    They never blast the bass on their car stereos.
    They never try to break in to my house. (maybe the trash can)
    They don’t deal in meth.
    They don’t perform drive-by shootings.
    They don’t run Palm Coast.
    They don’t put up red light cameras!!!!!

    It’s the homo sapiens that annoy me in Palm Coast.

  3. Rocky Mac says:

    Aw-w-w. An animal story with a happy ending. Thank you Deputy Wood.

  4. confidential says:

    My deepest appreciation to our deputies to help and freed this young raccoon. All these creatures were here in their natural sanctuary before we all arrived, so they deserve our respect and compassion. Also my appreciation goes to that young student that reported the animal caught in the tree. What a great example that tells we can all share our surroundings in peace and harmony. Our wildlife is as important as we are to keep natures delicate balance, that allows the permanency of all species on Earth!

  5. Steve Wolfe says:

    That’s just plain cute. Although the Deputy was taking a substantial risk, dealing with a wild animal in distress without all of the resources carried by Animal Control, there was still a happy ending. But if he had been bitten, he would have been faced with determining if the raccoon had rabies, or else taking rabies shots. Not cute.

    So in a community with so much wildlife, do we have enough animal control resources?

    • Karen says:

      @Steve
      Not all raccoons have rabies. You’re missing the entire point of the article.
      After the brouhaha over shooting defenseless wild annals simply because residents are afraid the Sheriff has taken a new approach.
      The animal wasn’t sick. It was stuck.
      Anal control would’ve killed it.
      Thanks again FCSO for adjusting your policies about our wildlife.

  6. ryan says:

    There was no reason to shoot, because it was just a baby raccoon who was stuck. If an animal is vicious and has rabies, the best thing is to shoot it.

  7. Karen says:

    Thank you . They are very smart animals. He/she may have been saying thank you…..just sayin

  8. Geezer says:

    The raccoon was arrested for public urination.

  9. Gia says:

    Bravo for caring & thank’s deputy.

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