VIRGINIA

Deer stuck between I-395 and Van Dorn

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ALEXANDRIA, Va. (WJLA) - It’s a patch of land right smack in the middle of I-395 and Van Dorn Street. And a deer is stuck on it.

"I've been seeing her for a couple years now," says Alexandria resident Pat Shannon.

"Every week it's less and less of her habitat, and in another week or so all of this will be gone and I don't know where she's going to go," adds Arlington resident Jim McCowan.

The Virginia Department of Transportation is building an extra lane and an off-ramp to provide better traffic flow on the northbound lanes of 395 and into the Marc building. And while the $76 million project is a sign of progress, it’s also a sign of the fate that awaits this deer.

"No other deer around, it's just the one lone one, it's just her," says Pat Shannon, who drives by every day and sees the deer she nicknamed “Baby.”

"She's going to either run into 395 and get ran over or to Van Dorn street and get killed -- it's not right," she says. "Someone needs to help her find a new home. She needs some help to get out of here and get to a habitat with other deer."

Surrounded by fences, ear “Baby” doesn’t know where to go and how to get home. Those concerned say it could be as easy as relocating the deer to open spaces like Holmes Run, which is just down the street.

But so far, no one seems to be able to help.

7 On Your Side started to call around, and a VDOT spokesperson tells us that they only remove dead animals from construction sites. However, they are willing to work with Alexandria Animal Control to get the deer to safety.

Joe Seskey, Alexandria’s Chief Animal Control Officer, said they are closely keeping an eye on the deer because they have a concern for the animal.

Seskey said he feels confident the deer will be able to go elsewhere once nearby residents stop feeding it:

"That will force it to find other food sources."

We also reached out to the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. A spokesperson tells us the deer needs to be left alone to live on its own and that it will most likely not survive because it is difficult and extremely dangerous to tranquilize the deer next to an interstate.

"Pains me to see her here by herself every day -- and now what little she had is being taken away," says Shannon.

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