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Hunter Dies After Engaging in "Scuffle" With Deer He Thought He Killed

By Chuck Sudo in News on Nov 16, 2011 9:30PM

Cervus Elaphus photo via Shutterstock.

Here's a story that should remind the hunters in our readership to make sure your kills are actually dead. Paul J. Smith of Fort Wayne, IN was doing his best to help reduce the deer population at Chain O'Lakes State Park Monday when he called his son to say he "shot a buck."

When Smith's son returned the call 90 minutes later, he told him he discovered the deer was still alive and "scuffled" with it before finishing the job with a knife, and field dressing and tagging the deer. Smith then brought his fresh venison to a check-in station, where a park employee noticed him unconscious against a tree.

Officials tried to revive Smith, but he was declared DOA by first responders. An autopsy conducted by the Noble County Coroner’s office found Smith's liver was lacerated, likely from the struggle with the deer.