A Lower Windsor Township woman killed by a deer on her family's property Friday afternoon was trying to get her dogs out of a deer pen when she was attacked, police said.
Natalie A. Shaffer, 30, of the 100 block of Forge Hill Road, was gored by the axis deer, Lower Windsor Township Police Chief Dave Sterner confirmed.
The buck was in rut, making it aggressive and unpredictable, the chief said.
Axis deer, also known as chital deer or spotted deer, are native to countries including India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. According to Sterner, axis deer can go into rut various times of the year.
The victim's father, Stan Shaffer, runs a private hunting preserve on the property where hunters can pay to hunt, according to Sterner. In addition to axis deer, he also has elk and red stags, Sterner said.
Chasing dogs: It was about 4:30 p.m. Friday when Natalie Shaffer realized her two puppies had gotten into the deer enclosure, according to the chief.
"She went in there to get the dogs out," he said.
The deer likely only attacked because it was in the rut, Sterner said.
Natalie Shaffer's oldest daughter called 911, and responding officers gave the woman CPR in an effort to revive her.
"It was too late by then," Sterner said.
The attacking deer was euthanized, police said.
Head trauma: Natalie Shaffer died of sharp-force head trauma, according to the York County Coroner's Office, which has ruled her death an accident.
Lower Windsor Township Police have closed the investigation into the incident, Sterner said; the state Department of Agriculture is also looking into it.
That's because the state agency regulates private hunting preserves, he said.
Sterner said Natalie Shaffer was a nice person.
"I've known her since she was 8 years old," he said.
Her survivors include son Connor Goheen; daughters Kharisma Shaffer, Danika Shaffer and Dallas Goheen; fiance Bill Goheen; and her parents, Stan and June Shaffer.
-- Liz Evans Scolforo can also be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.