CALEDONIA, Minn. (WCCO) — A southeastern Minnesota deer farmer is in shock over the loss of his prized trophy buck.

Police believe a 19-year-old Rushford man entered the property early last Thursday morning and shot a 21-point buck with a bow and arrow.

The deer was near world-record size, according to the Boone and Crockett website.

“He was a 3-and-a-half-year-old buck. He was the product of many years of breeding and genetics,” said the deer’s owner, who has been raising deer for 15 years. “It’s completely devastating … We don’t know exactly how to keep going when something of this magnitude happens.”

The deer’s owner didn’t want to be identified, but he said the buck was living on his brother’s farm with 24 other deer.

Around 2:30 a.m. last Thursday, someone trespassed into the pen and killed the deer. So far, the evidence leads to the Rushford man. Police believe he cut through a fence to pull the buck out.

Two other deer are still missing. Also missing is their sense of security.

“You don’t get that back. We haven’t had a decent night’s sleep since this happened. Any little noise you hear, people slowing down on the road, anything. You don’t recover from that. You wake up instantly. You don’t get a half hour straight of sleep,” said the owner.

There’s a chance the buck may have one day grown to world-record status, but the deer’s owner and his brother will never know. What they hope for now is that the shooter will be brought to justice.

“I don’t know who this person is or anything about them, and I don’t care to. I know what I need to know about him and that’s what he did to us,” said the owner.

The Houston County Sheriff’s Department said the 19-year-old could be charged as early as Wednesday.

The two deer still missing from the farm have yellow tags in their ears.

If anyone comes across them, they are urged to contact the Houston County Sheriff’s Department.

Comments (53)
  1. Floater says:

    Even fences can’t keep young men from big racks. What a sad state of affairs.

  2. frozenrunner says:

    The kid would had to know that it was a deer farm. Hope they throw the book at him as what was taken can not be replaced.

  3. Randy says:

    Can’t sleep. Give me a break. The kid shot the deer. He isn’t going to shoot into the window. LOL

    1. CARING ONE says:


      1. poaching, the norm in MN says:

        Randy needs to spend time with Deer and learn that, just as dogs, they have personalities. To watch them run and play together and to interact with humans is something few of us get to experience. I have had more than one beautiful Buck poached in this area, and can relate to the max on what this man is saying. We need a Season on Poachers.

        1. Buck says:

          “Deer have personalities…they run and play together…” Yet, humans kill them every year. Let us not get too attached.

          1. Follow the rules says:

            Homg kill and eat dogs too, so does that mean they can kill and eat your dog?
            This man OWNED that BUCK if he wanted to become attached to it he has all the right to do that. and if you ever raised deer you would know they do become alot like dog as far as pets with thier personalities.
            Deer hunting is for wild deer and with out bait or night spot lights or driving down roads with loaded guns. FOLLOWS the RULES!

      2. Larry Sammy Brunkow says:

        i totally agree that randy is a idot

  4. Freddy says:

    Why would you want to produce a world class deer? Were they going to turn it in to boone and crocket? So many put their self worth on the size of the rack, You can’t eat the dam things.

  5. MrBB says:

    Well if you people knew anything about raising deer you would know that the off spring of this buck could bring big dollars, which is why this farmer was raising deer. There are ranchers in Texas and all over the world that run hunting preserves and they would pay up to $10,000 for stud service with a doe of theirs with this buck. Too bad the kid won’t get whats coming to him, not from the legal system anyways!

  6. The REAL, real Jake says:

    But yet no one weeps for Bambi’s mother!

    1. Evil2Hope says:

      Yeah we should all cry for liberal propaganda.

      1. Ian Z. Futterer says:

        Walt Disney was a right-wing racist. I fail to see why he would have ANY reason create “liberal propaganda”

  7. bpk says:

    Most people dont understand how much deer like this are worth $ wise. Just its antler sheds when they fall off in the spring are multiple thousands I’m sure.

  8. Dev says:

    The civil suit could cost that moron his entire future. As it should

  9. red says:

    Juvenile Delinquent- He probably thought it was all fun and games doing it on a dare-

    1. jackactionhero says:

      “He probably thought it was all fun and games doing it on a dare”

      That is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. Who sneaks into a game farm and shoots a buck and drags it out a hole he made in the fence at 2:30 in the morning?

      What you suggested is not even remotely feasible or likely.

      1. amk says:

        I beg to differ my dear jackactionhero…..”not even remotely feasible”? Way wrong. You ask “Who sneaks into a game farm and shoots a buck and drags it out a hole he made in the fence at 2:30 in the morning?”…..a 19 year old boy on a possible dare, that’s who.
        You must not be familiar with children and yound adults at all. You must think they all say their prayers before going to bed at 9pm, then waking up and going to church in the morning.
        News Flash: It is 100% possible for this to have been a dare.
        Am I saying it was a dare? No. I’m just a bit more realistic than you and know that it IS possible.

        1. jackactionhero says:

          Oh really? I have 5 kids, including 3 teenagers and a 12 year old. How about you?

          The kid saw the deer, and went back and killed it and dragged it out. Period. Don’t be so thick.

          1. gertude7 says:

            Sorry dude I think it could have been a dare just sayin

            1. abchgrl says:

              Even if it was a dare, dont ya think that he could have said no, im not doing that. There is no way that a 19 year old didnt know better! I am 20 and i would never do that! I am a hunter myself, and I earn any deer that I tag. This is absolutely ridiculous that you people are supportig him, and taking his back. Lets be real here.

  10. Minnesota is not so nice says:

    The question is why did he do it? At 2:30 AM, a little liquid courage coem sto mind, but realistically if he took the deer for food, who woudl spite him? He should not have done it there is not doubt about that, but if it was to feed his family, I feel bad for him…

    1. amk says:

      Is “stupid” your favorite word? Try reading a thesaurus (an no that’s not a dinosaur). You will find many other words comparable to stupid. Heck, you may even impress someone with your extended vocabulary.

      1. jackactionhero says:

        No, but it is the one that comes to mind immediately when I see your comments.

        1. desert eagle .50 says:

          Why? Please be specific.

  11. merlyn3248 says:

    If the idiot who killed this deer thinks criminal charges are bad enough, wait until he is sued in civil court for damages. This buck was worth a fortune for stud service. The restitution could be in many tens of thousands of dollars, maybe even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    1. insignificant says:

      plus probably a 3 year ban on dnr licenses,gear confiscated,tresspass(criminal),damage to property…we may never know as ‘cco tends to drop the ball on some o’ these stories,eh?

    2. hmmmm says:

      Too bad he’s 19, how are they going to get tens of thousands from a 19 year old?

      1. tom says:

        They should take it from hi mommy, little liberal is probably living on her couch in the basement anyway.

        1. Urbanite says:

          the story said nothing about politics. Nothing about this is political. I HIGHLY doubt that whoever did this is a liberal.

  12. G Dog says:

    You really should have to take an IQ test before you are allowed to buy a gun.

  13. Vin says:

    He shot it with an bow and arrow, whats does that have to do with guns, G Dog?

  14. Killing not Hunting says:

    Hunting use to be enjoying nature and all the woods had to offer.
    (Note the word hunting not killing)
    The sport should now be called killing not hunting because the next generation has been taught that it’s all about killing trophy’s and has nothing to do with hunting or nature. The woods up around my house in northern Minnesota has more corn in it during poaching oops I mean hunting season then all the farms in Iowa combined.

    1. abchgrl says:

      what the hell are you talking about. Do no categorize all hunter to be “killers” i know that when I go out in the woods, i hunt. I hunt does or bucks, not just one or the other, and if I shoot one or the other me and my family use every chunk of meat off of those deer to eat. DO NOT SAY THAT ALL HUNTERS ARE KILLERS, unless you are just refering to yourself. Suck it up and come back to reality here. This boy waas in the wrong and should be locked up for it! this is ridiculous!

      1. jackactionhero says:

        Not all hunters are killers.

        Some miss.


  15. twisted logic says:

    Hunting use to be enjoying nature and all the woods had to offer.
    (Note the word hunting not killing)
    The sport should now be called killing not hunting, because the next generation has been taught that it’s all about killing trophy’s and has nothing to do with hunting or nature. The woods up around my house in northern Minnesota contain more corn during poaching, oops I mean hunting season, then all the farms in Iowa combined.

  16. James says:

    Thanks for giving Rushford a bad name ahole. The hunters I know from Rushford are upstanding citizens that hunt safely and honorably. I hope Mr. Book (Local game warden) sorts this out in due time and delivers the appropriate consequences. Probably born from the same clan of self-entitled occupy protesters and union crowd that we see all over this country. What’s happening to this world?

    1. Jay says:

      One bad apple doesnt necessarily spoil the bushel. You evidently DONT know all the hunters in your area or youd provide the violators name. The killing of this buck was a totally senseless act!

  17. Rubin says:

    The kid cut the fence to drag it out. Clearly he knew what he was doing was illegal. This is the kind of person that gives hunters a bad name.

  18. hillbilly repub says:

    aint gunz gud?

  19. lawyer says:

    State of MN Statute 543 allows the judge a sentence of up to 17 years. Depending on the kids history and parents wealth he could spend the next 10 years behind bars. Incredible stupidity.

  20. robinwright says:

    Katniss, I know it was you. Stop dressing like a dude and killing deer with the toy bow we got you for Christmas or you’ll end up on Hunger Games.

  21. scassidine says:

    Now if someone could please poach him, we would have one less loser in this world!

  22. my 2 cents says:

    as i red through the comments ive gotten confused was a dear killed or a prostitute? im not saying what this kid done is right but if the owner was only raising the deer to profit from studding him out then in comparison the owner is basically was pimping out the deer. again i dont agree with what the kid had done but nor do i agree with the pimp owner.

    1. jackactionhero says:

      Deer in rut are DRIVEN to breed. What the owner was doing was giving him a higher success rate at achieving his own goal of breeding. He was doing him a favor. Plus he was keeping him alive and providing him the best nutrition possible. But you knew that I’m sure…

  23. Jessica says:

    It doesn’t matter what your stance is on deer – pets, they have feelings, eat them, etc. The fact of the matter is that this young man trespassed on someone else’s property and took something that did not belong to him. It’s a shame since this man had been prepping the buck for over 3 years.

    I don’t care if you’re an animal lover or not, trespassing is a CRIME and people need to learn that they can’t just do whatever the eff they want.

    He has every right to feel that his sense of security is gone. Some criminals are greedy and he may come back for more.

    What a shame that the world is polluted with such trash people.

    I had a pet deer when I was young and I would be p*ssed if someone had killed him.

  24. mr obvious says:

    BOOM. Headshot!

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