Residents Concerned About Fairfax County's Use of AR-15s to Control Deer Population

Police say using AR-15s is the most humane option

Some residents of Fairfax County, Virginia, say they're concerned about how many deer police are killing and the weapons they're using to do so.

Fairfax County Police Department's sharp shooting team plans to use AR-15 rifles to kill deer in Loftridge Park and Clermont Park in the Alexandria area of the county from mid November to mid March.

"Even though the police say they shoot down as it’s supposed to be safe, we just feel that you can’t ever rule out weapons malfunction or human error," Alexandria resident Nancy Schoenig told News4. "Would you want somebody firing an AR-15 near your house? I mean think about it."

Schoenig is one of about 200 people who live in homes around the perimeter of the parks where police will kill the deer.

Other residents in the area said the deer come into neighboring communities and they are a nuisance.

"They're overpopulated," resident Renee Grebe said of the deer.

"I’m supportive of the police leading a sharp shooting operation, which is what they’re doing in a very safe manner," Grebe said.

Police said the deer management program is necessary to control the deer population and officers have used AR-15s over the past 4 years because it’s the most accurate and humane option.

Police said they do not shoot in the direction of homes.

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