Edward Nieves was driving on the Kensington Expressway early Monday morning with his girlfriend and his 8-month-old son when he saw something startling.
A large buck that had just been struck by a Jeep at about 8:30 a.m. was flailing on the edge of the outbound 33, near Fillmore Avenue in Buffalo. Then, Nieves saw two men walk up to the animal and one of them opened fire with a handgun.
"We heard gun shots," Nieves, 29, of Buffalo said. "Five gunshots."
The other man stood by holding a shotgun.
He was stunned. "I called the police," he said. "I called 911.... He just opened fire on the buck. It was still moving in traffic. There's kids in people's cars."
It turns out that the men on the side of the road were city animal control officers who were dispatched to humanely euthanize the deer which was badly hurt in the crash with the Jeep.
"The deer suffered extensive, life-threatening injuries including broken legs," said Buffalo police spokesman Michael J. DeGeorge.
Nieves was surprised, but glad to hear that the shooter was authorized to do what he did.
He knows deer vs. car accidents are common in the suburbs and the country. When he visits his family in Williamsville, Nieves often sees deer in the backyard. But this was the first time he saw a deer shot in the middle of the city.
"It was pretty intense," he said.