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Camel dies after leading deputies on chase

MCAC camel photo.jpg
Macon County camel's death under investigation. (Macon County Animal Control)

A Macon County man is looking for answers after his family’s camel, that escaped Sunday in rural Macon County, died.

Trent Dimas said his parents bought the six-year-old female camel over the weekend.

She was still so new that they hadn’t fully decided on a name, but were leaning toward Sassy.

A camel chase was a new experience for most in Macon County.

“We’ll get cows in the roadway, we’ll get deer in the roadway, we’ve had goats in the roadway, but I have never heard of a camel in the roadway,” said Sgt. Scott Flannery with the Macon County Sheriff’s Office.

Dimas, who’s parents also own another camel named Chloe, said Sassy escaped early Sunday morning.

His neighbor, Curtis Grubb, said it appears the six-year-old camel broke through her fence into his yard.

“I started mowing and going back to that part of my pasture and the fence was down,” Grubb said.

Another neighbor said he and his sons saw Sassy stroll right through their backyard.

Someone who witnessed the chase sent us this video showing part of the chase.

Flannery said the pursuit lasted for about 30 minutes before they could finally catch Sassy.

“They went out there and the camel was spooked because it’s in an environment that it doesn’t know very well,” Flannery said. “It’s a corn field. You don’t see very many corn fields I guess wherever camels are from. So, every time they would start to approach it, it would run 5 feet further, then they’d walk two feet and it’d run 10 feet further. They chased it across a couple fields.”

Flannery said thankfully, Sassy stayed off major roads.

“It is becoming the fall,” Flannery said. “We’re starting to see deer movement a lot more. I would probably not say we’ll see a whole lot of camel movement in the near future, but with deer in the roadway — you’re going to be driving down the road, it’s dark out, they’re moving —just take a little bit of extra precaution as you’re driving.”

Another one of Dimas’s neighbors, Jack Dickey, got home after the camel chase was over and saw Sassy laying down.

“I went over and asked him what happened?” Dickey said. “ He went, 'I don’t know. She just got worse and worse and it went downhill pretty quick.'”

Ultimately, Sassy, who Dimas just brought home over the weekend, passed away.

The news has left her owners and neighbors wondering why as they mourn her loss.

“I’m curious to find out why and exactly what happened,” Grubbs said.

Macon County Animal Control said they’re currently investigating Sassy’s death to find out a cause.

RELATED STORY - Sheriff's Office: Camel became ill after fall at owner's home

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