Kangaroo captured after marsupial melee in Lacoochee

8:40 AM, Jun 3, 2013   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +

LACOOCHEE, Florida -- For 12 hours, Pasco County dispatchers received calls about a kangaroo on the loose in Lacoochee. Deputy Gene Smith thought it was a prank.

Then came the call at 6:45 a.m. on Sunday, June 2. The rambunctious 'roo was apparently approaching the area around U.S. 301.

"Sure enough, there was a kangaroo in the middle of the road," he says. In his 17 years of service, he says he's never responded to a call like that.

See Also: Llama busts loose in Florida, subdued with taser

For hours, he, along with officers from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Pasco County Sheriff's Office Agricultural Unit, tried to wrangle in the five foot, 200 pound kangaroo. Their mission: bring it back to safety without hurting it. Not even tranquilizers, though, did the trick.

"We attempted to Taser the kangaroo," Smith says. "That had no effect."

Kevin Wehling heard rumors about the kangaroo and wanted to see it for himself. Next thing he knew, he saw it hopping in his direction and says he instantly turned from a spectator into a kangaroo catcher.

"I decided if it came my way, I was gonna dive on it," he says. "It was headed toward 301, and I didn't want to see anybody run it over or get in an accident."

So Wehling drew from his experience wrangling animals on a farm and went to work.

"I bounced it off of a chain link fence and it went to the ground and I decided it wasn't going to get up," he explains. "I was mainly worried about its back legs, and then another deputy jumped on it from there, and it was just a big dog pile after that."

The kangaroo was taken to a veterinarian and is now being looked after by someone in the area who knows how to care for them, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office. 

"It was a pretty big and extremely strong animal," Smith says. "It wasn't until I grabbed those legs that I realized just how strong they were. It doesn't look like that on TV."

It's still unknown who actually owns it. You can legally have one as a pet as long as you have the right permits.

"I believe [the kangaroo] was pretty drugged up. I don't think I would have dove on it if it would have been un-drugged," Wehling says about his experience. "Once you get on top of one of them, on the belly and all that, if you can control the legs, you'll be all right."

You may also like...

Teen Sex: Online support grows 18-year-old girl who had same-sex relationship with 15-year-old

Prostitute Roundup: 92 arrested in online sex sting

Cannonball: Men who jumped on top of manatees may face charges

Investigation: Florida shortens yellow lights to cause more red light tickets

Attractive Convict: Woman behind mug shot meme sets the record straight

Crime-Fighting Gator: Man flees cops, attacked by alligator

Homebrew Soda: Man claims to find Coca-Cola recipe, sells it on eBay

Watch this, Brother: Hulk Hogan does the weather at 10 News!

Record-breaker: 18-foot python caught in Florida!

Dwinking and Dwiving: Barbara Walters' daughter arrested for DUI

PHOTOS: Bikini bike wash!

Happy Reunion: Kidnapped kids taken to Cuba back with grandparents

Faces of Meth: Before and After pictures

Sex tape scandal: Miss Delaware Teen USA resigns

Neigh! Video shows man brutalizing, having sex with horse

Sex blog: Tampa area school CFO busted over her dirty sex porn blog *warning, GRAPHIC*

Nasty Nasty Dining: 10 of the nastiest restaurants in Tampa Bay in 2012

APP-tastic: Download the 10 News app for your iPad

Bikini Photos: 2012 Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant

Money MondaysHow you can search for unclaimed cash

Sex Offender Mugshots: Look up Florida Sex Offenders here

Bikinis, mud, trucks: The Redneck Yacht Club

Naughty Schoolgirls: Naughty schoolgirl night at Tampa club pictures

Nip/tuck: Hooters tries surviving middle age with a makeover

Outrageous mug shot galleries...

Strange: Some of the most unusual mug shots we've seen

Notorious Women: Bad girls behind bars

Teachers: Teacher arrest mugshots

Celebrities: The rich and famous have their own booking photos

Jaw droppers: Open mouth mug shots

Laughers: What's so funny mug shots

Prostitutes: Prostitute mug shots

Athletes: Professional athlete mug shots

Porn arrests: Child porn arrest mug shots

Local Mugs: Hillsborough County Mug shots

More unusual mug shots and galleries: 10 News slideshows and galleries


Most Watched Videos