A deer hoofing its way through downtown Urbana on Monday morning passed through one local business before being coaxed to safety by local police officers.
According to Urbana resident Darrell Wilcox, who was sitting on a bench on North Main Street enjoying a cup of coffee, the incident began some time after 10 a.m. when he noticed a doe running around in Monument Square.
Having lived in the country and having hunted deer, Wilcox said he knew no good would come of the situation considering the way the animal was acting.
“It was running like it was afraid of something,” he said.
Before Wilcox knew it, the doe had sprinted past him and straight through two storefront windows at TeaBaggers, 127 N. Main St.
“I’ve never seen anything like it,” he said. “I’ve seen it on TV where a deer jumps through a window and ends up in a building, but this one went through two windows. It was a heck of a way to start a Monday morning!”
Wilcox added the doe jumped through one window near the entrance of the business before exiting through a side window facing East Court Street. In all, three of the five windows on the north side of the business were shattered.
At the time of the incident, TeaBaggers owners Demora and Grant Holcomb were on site along with a food delivery driver and two customers.
One of the customers, who wished to remain anonymous, said, “We didn’t see anything. We just heard it and actually thought a car went through the window.”
Mrs. Holcomb said Gates Brothers Glass Shops was immediately contacted and would board up the broken storefront windows until they could be repaired.
Fate of the culprit
After officers from the Urbana Police Division arrived shortly after 10:30 a.m., Lt. Josh Jacobs said the deer had ducked into a nearby alley off East Court Street and was hiding in a doorway.
“It had some superficial injuries and was moving around pretty healthy,” he said.
After determining it appeared the deer had survived the incident with no major injuries, officers were able to spook the deer out of hiding. Once on the move, the deer made its way up North Main Street before hanging a left and heading down West Ward Street.
Jacobs said the last sighting of the deer by an officer was near the railroad tracks/bike path in the 100 block of Gwynne Street close to a wooded area.
“It was able to get to a safe place,” he added.