Viewer to pick up tab for Indianapolis father fined for hitting goose with plastic bat to protect son

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – An Indianapolis father who says he used a plastic baseball bat to protect his son from an aggressive goose was fined $25 in the case.

James McDaniel said the court didn’t agree with his actions and issued a fine along with $133 in court costs during a court appearance Monday.

McDaniel said he wouldn’t have to pay the money out of his own pocket, however, because a viewer saw his story and agreed to cover the costs because he didn’t think McDaniel should have been fined for trying to protect his son.

McDaniel said the aggressive Canada goose was chasing after his 4-year-old son. McDaniel grabbed a plastic bat, hit the bird and then ran across the street with his son.

Marion County Animal Services issued McDaniel a ticket for animal cruelty. While the agency couldn’t comment on the case, the incident report cited witnesses who said McDaniel hit the bird three times. An officer took the goose to a local veterinarian, the report said.

McDaniel said he was “frustrated” by the ticket because the bird was aggressive and he wanted to make sure his son didn’t get hurt.

According to the Department of Natural Resources, a person can protect themselves or others from wildlife as long as they use a “reasonable amount” of force based on the amount of harm a particular animal can inflict.