CHASKA (AP) -- A state trooper has been charged with animal cruelty in the death of a well-known local turkey.
Trooper Mark Lund was charged with the misdemeanor Wednesday after allegedly running over the wild bird with his vehicle and twisting it by the head May 3, authorities said.
Lund had been responding to a call by a woman who said she couldn't get into her car at the Carver County Courthouse because the turkey was pecking at the tires, said Kevin Smith, spokesman for the state Public Safety Department.
The turkey was popular with residents and had become a mascot of sorts to county employees, who often fed it, County Attorney Mike Fahey said.
Smith said Lund, a two-year trooper, called the DNR for advice on handling the turkey and rejected an initial suggestion to shoot it.
"Then they said to run it over," Smith said.
After Lund ran over the turkey, it was severely injured, but not dead. He picked it up and twisted its head to put it out of its misery.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.