Homer Alaska - News

Story last updated at 4:40 PM on Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Police shoot aggressive moose at high school

By Michael Armstrong
Staff Writer

An aggressive moose hanging out at the entrance to Homer High School about 12:30 p.m. Sunday charged several people leaving services of The Church On the Rock, held in the Alice Witte Gym at the school. No one was injured, but Homer Police eventually killed the moose after it later attacked a police officer.

From 400 to 450 people typically attend services on Sunday, said Jared Baker, office administrator of the nondenominational church that rents the gym. Some people were trapped inside the school. One leader chased the moose off with a shovel.

Unfortunately, the moose continued to be aggressive and threatened Homer Police Officer Ryan Browning. Police had made an earlier call on Saturday because of an aggressive moose, thought to be the same animal, said Homer Police Chief Mark Robl. Browning was not injured.

On Sunday, police tried to lure the moose away with food, and tried to scare it away with bullhorns and sirens. They also tried to pepper spray and user a Taser on the moose. None of that worked.

"An officer was endangered, almost getting stomped and barely managed to get out of the way," Robl said. "We decided we had to put the moose down."

Police consulted with Thomas McDonough, a wildlife biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, and he agreed killing the moose was the best option, Robl said.

Police shot the moose near the front entrance area of the high school. A charity salvaged the moose meat.

Michael Armstrong can be reached at michael.armstrong@homernews.com.