A woman received facial injuries when a deer ran loose along a city centre shopping street. The animal was spotted racing through Chelmsford High Street and surrounding roads and was later seen near the A12. Mick McDonagh, manager of the High Chelmer shopping centre, said: "It tried to leap over a young lady and unfortunately hit her." The woman was given first aid treatment for "facial lacerations and a black eye", Mr McDonagh said.
Essex Police said a woman was taken to Broomfield Hospital with "a minor head
injury" and later discharged. A spokesperson said the "large male deer" was seen soon after on the High
Street and there were reported sightings on the A12 near junction 18. A rolling roadblock was put in place but the deer was not spotted again.
Essex Wildlife Trust said it was difficult to identify the species of deer
from the CCTV image. Biodiversity officer Mark Iley said that a fallow deer was the most likely in
terms of population size in Essex but it could have been a red deer, which are
rare in the county. "This is very unusual behaviour for a deer, as they are usually very
secretive, especially during daylight hours," Mr Iley said.
"Possibly the animal had been disturbed and separated from its group. The animal may have become trapped along the road corridor and found itself
funnelled into the town centre area, where it would have become extremely
disorientated and frightened. The injury to the bystander was unfortunate but not a deliberate act by the
deer, which are not aggressive animals."