Cop (with more hair at the time) recalls what he had to do 25 years ago to end rogue buck’s downtown destruction

Mike Kellems, now a LaPorte County Sheriff’s Captain, sported hair, denim and spiffy white sneakers at the time he did what had to be done to euthanize a young buck in 1992.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Sometimes officers are called upon to put animals out of their misery. That was the case 25 years ago when a buck, after sustaining injuries as it crashed into several downtown LaPorte businesses, was euthanized by now-LaPorte County Sheriff’s Captain Mike Kellems. Here he remembers that unusual event.

While looking through “Moments in Time” on WNLP Oct. 19, 2017, I saw that on this date in 1992 a deer wreaked havoc at downtown businesses before being shot at the

Mike Kellems

county complex. I was off duty that day and happened to be at the sheriff’s department when Virginia Seitz, who worked the front desk at the sheriff’s office then, came into the squad room and told me there was some kind of trouble between the complex and courthouse. I quickly learned that a buck had been running down State Street, jumped through large windows and doors, and did considerable damage at the Farm Bureau Co-Op building.

I ran out to the walkway between the courthouse and complex and saw in the courtyard the young buck with antler spikes. The deer jumped into the courtyard, which was about a 20-foot drop onto concrete. The deer, in full panic, had already jumped through two huge plate-glass windows in the lower-level walkway of the complex and was trying for number three. The immediate fear was that he would make it into the building and possibly injure someone, or further injure itself. I made a quick decision to put the deer down. One shot with my 9mm went through its lung and into the heart, killing the deer instantly. A local attorney took the deer to harvest the venison.

Hard to believe that was 25 years ago … hard to believe I had hair … hard to believe I wore that much denim!

4 Responses to “Cop (with more hair at the time) recalls what he had to do 25 years ago to end rogue buck’s downtown destruction”

  1. billie womack

    Oct 20. 2017

    your still the Salad bar and Tea man and one great guy

    Reply to this comment
  2. Rogue?

    Oct 21. 2017

    I don’t think describing the buck as “rogue” is fair. The poor animal was clearly acting the way he was due to extreme fear. I doubt he woke up that morning and said “I’m going to town to wreak havoc on humans today”.

    Reply to this comment
  3. Anon

    Oct 23. 2017

    This is the literal definition of rogue from…

    2). an elephant or other large wild animal driven away or living apart from the herd and having savage or destructive tendencies.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Walter Brath

    Oct 25. 2017

    I remember this “Cop” when he was in the County Police Cadets. He was sitting in the back of the room at the complex and I was teaching the class how to direct traffic.

    Wally Brath

    Reply to this comment

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