Frustrated with a doe and her fawn for eating his decorative plants, a Tiburon man shot and killed the animals last weekend, police said.
Tiburon police responded to a report of a man acting strangely on the 2300 block of Mar East Street around 5:20 a.m. Saturday. There, officers found the two fatally injured deer.
Officers arrested Mark Dickinson, 54, after they determined he shot the deer several times with a high-powered pellet gun with scope, laser and flashlight attachment, according to chief Michael Cronin.
"He said he was sick of the deer eating his expensive landscaping," Tiburon police Sgt. Steve Hahn told the Marin Humane Society, who wrote about the animals' death on Facebook.
They continued: "This tragic incident serves as a reminder that we promote the respect of wild animals through peaceful coexistence. There are many ways to protect your yard from deer, whether it's by building appropriate fencing or planting deer-resistant shrubs, trees, and plants."
However, Dickinson's lawyer Charles Dresow said the killing was an accident.
"My client did not intend to harm the animals," Dresow said. "The public outrage related to these allegations is driven by the inflammatory claims of the Tiburon Police Department which haven't been proven in Court."
Dickinson was taken into custody and booked at the Marin County Jail, police said. He faces charges of felony animal cruelty, but has since posted bail. The case against him is pending at the Marin County District Attorney's Office.
The Marin County Humane Society was called to dispose of the deer and the agency is urging prosecutors to file charges.
Society spokeswoman Lisa Bosch said the deer suffered a long and painful death.
"It was a momma doe and her daughter and they weren't menacing anyone," Bosch said. "Using violence is something that is upsetting to people. We are certainly disturbed."
Thousands of negative comments have been posted on several social media sites, including Facebook and the Tiburon section of the web site NextDoor calling for prosecutors to charge Dickinson.
Tiburon is one of the wealthiest enclaves in the county. The median household income is $130,000 and the median home price is $2.3 million.