SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico grandfather’s effort to euthanize the family duck drew police after residents reported multiple shots fired.
Santa Fe police initially confiscated a handgun from Lorenzo Pacheco, who had fired four shots at the bird, the Santa Fe New Mexican reports.
His granddaughter, Kaelyn Pacheco, said in a phone interview Wednesday that officers showed compassion toward the man after learning he had carried out the shooting in an act of mercy.
Police arrived just before a burial for the bird was about to start.
Kaelyn Pacheco says the duck, a family pet, had become paralyzed and couldn’t walk, and it also had an eye infection.
A police report of the incident said Lorenzo Pacheco “felt bad and did not want to break the neck of the duck and thought using a firearm would be more humane.”
He placed the duck in an enclosed area and fired four shots, the report said.
Officers went to Lorenzo Pacheco’s home, where he showed them the pistol he had used to shoot the duck. According to the report, the officer “collected the weapon for safekeeping and placed it into safekeeping.”
Lorenzo Pacheco said in an interview that police returned his gun to him Tuesday after determining there was no cause for a charge of negligent use of a firearm.