4 min read

Woman Steals Baby Deer So She Can Take A Selfie With Her

A Michigan woman stole fawns from the forest and brought them home to raise as pets - and selfies.

Karen Hofstetter, of Montcalm County, Michigan, was charged with four counts of taking a protected animal from the wild. Each conviction carries a fine of up to $1,000, but Hofstetter cut a deal that brings her fines down to $575.

But Hofstetter, who took pictures of the babies in her home, along with at least one selfie, didn't just defend her actions at first. She retaliated against Michigan's Department of Natural Resources (DNR) - with threats to harm more animals.

"Montcalm DNR is a piece of (expletive)," she reportedly wrote in a Facebook post that has since been deleted. "Any animal I see from today until the day I finally (expletive) die I'm going to kill. Snapping necks (expletive). #orangeisthenewblack"

Michigan Department of Natural Resources

Hofstetter later apologized for her statement, telling Fox News, "I've never actually killed an animal in my life in all honesty, I don't know if I could, and I'm sorry I posted it."

In fact, she added, she planned to give the babies away - as pets.

The agency seized four deer from her home in May. Two of them are still being rehabilitated, while a third has already been returned to the wild. The fourth fawn died on the way to the rehabilitation center.

Michigan Department of Natural Resources

Wildlife kidnappings are, sadly, nothing new. Some people mistakenly think they're helping the babies by "rescuing" them, while others just want them as pets.

In virtually every case, human intervention ends badly for the animal.

When a doe gives birth, Ron Kimmerley, an officer with the DNR, explained to FOX17, they may leave the babies alone for brief stints.

In fact, "99.9 per cent of the time when the people come in contact with these little fawns, everything is perfectly fine, just leave them alone, the mom will come back after dark," he told the news station."When they touch the fawn and bring the fawn in, it's pretty much a death sentence for the deer."

Babies in the wild don't need human mothers. And they are certainly not pets in waiting. If you find an animal who appears to be in trouble, call the nearest wildlife rescue.

Here's how you can find one.