A Pacific Palisades local who spotted a blood-spattered man with a knife phoned 911, and responding police, seeing much of the same, called for backup.
Was it a real-life Silence of the Lambs in the making? Not exactly:
Turns out the guy was legally "dressing down" a deer that had been fatally struck by a car -- cutting it up for the venison meat, Scott Wagenseller, CEO of local private security force Palisades Patrol, told the Weekly:
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It's a whole procedure of gutting, cleaning and prepping the deer for meat.
The guy wasn't arrested because it's perfectly legal.
Wagenseller explained that dying deer, usually hit by cars, are fair game, so to speak, and that if animal control authorities were called out they probably would have shot the deer to put it out of its misery and called in sanitation workers to pick it up anyway.
It happened Nov. 15 about noon in the 1400 block of Palisades Drive. But it wasn't reported until this week, when Patch broke the story.
Cops held the man at gunpoint, and Palisades Patrol officers responded as potential back-up until things were figured out, Wagenseller said.
The guy was a contractor who had apparently been working at a nearby condo complex, which abuts the Santa Monica Mountains and Santa Ynez Canyon Park.
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What's perhaps most surprising about this story is that this sort of thing isn't that unusual. A lot of deer from the mountains roam the area and some folks, mostly outdoor workers but sometimes even residents, go for the meat after one is killed.
It happens consistently. Many of the gardeners out there will pick these deer up. I've had Palisades residents tell me they did it years ago when they were kids, But it's the gardeners who have the capacity of picking up a carcass of that size and have the right vehicles. Not many BMWs are right for it.
Not too many money managers do such a thing.