BALTIMORE COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — They fought to save a life, and now they say they’ll fight the fine.

It all revolves around the rescue of a deer trapped in icy water Thursday night.

Alex DeMetrick reports that good deed was rewarded with tickets.

Strangers banded together to pull a deer out of the freezing water of the Patapsco River on Thursday night.

“We seen the deer going under,” said Khalil Abusakran. “It couldn’t maintain.  It was starting to freeze, and it was really getting bad.”

Abusakran brought a raft, and Jim Hart joined him.

“We had oars and shovels to break the ice, for the deer to get out,” Abusakran said.

But in the excited aftermath of the rescue, a Natural Resources Police officer on the scene wrote both men a ticket.

“And he didn’t say anything,” Jim Hart said. “We went in and out of the water numerous times.  He didn’t stop us at all.”

They say they were ticketed for not wearing life vests, although both are over the age for mandatory use of flotation devices.

“No, we didn’t have life vests on, but we’re not 16-years-old,” Abusakran said. “There were personal floating devices in the boat.”

Natural Resources Police would not go on camera, but told WJZ the rescuers were warned they would be violating Maryland law. 

The ticket itself doesn’t check off any specific violation, just a $90 fine.

They’ll fight it in court, as they fought for the deer.

The two men ticketed say they will fight the citations at a court hearing in Annapolis set for Feb. 18.

Comments (1,101)
  1. Lockman says:

    The guys that saved the deer should only have gotten a warning only. If it was the game warden stuck I’m sure he would want to be pulled out and saved. But he would probably give them a ticket after he warmed up a bit from being stuck in the ice because he has no heart or compassion for anything.

  2. Steve says:


    I work in law-enforcement and in my training i have taught 2 things you have the spirit of the law and the letter of the law. And as officers you have what you call officer discretion and I think that this game officer as some of them i deal with here need to go to an ETHICS class.

  3. unclepossum says:

    The comments in this article show two basic options:
    Show compassion on any other living and do what you can to save them from harm, Or, let nature take its course. Stand there and witness the “natural” drama unfold.

    While saving every wild thing is an often overdone position, becoming excessive to the point of stupid. A person who could just impassively watch as a “save-able” critter drowns, one who would have no emotional reaction, and just walk away to forget the whole scene, is a scary person to me, and I would wonder what happened to them to allow that coldness in their heart.

    For sure, there are times when you need to be hard hearted, such as in war, but even those combatants will take time to save a wounded dog lying on the field.!

  4. bechanderyn says:

    Good ;uck with your court hearing on Feb 18th guys. We can only hope the judge has an ounce worths of sense more than this pencil pushing twerp.

  5. knuddelbacke says:

    Put a PayPal button here and let us pay the ticket. There’s no herb grown to cure ignorance … thank you for saving the deer guys!!

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