Kangaroo on the loose leads SC deputies on wild goose chase

McCORMICK COUNTY, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) – Videos have been popping up after a kangaroo was seen hopping along the road in McCormick County after the animal escaped.

You might be thinking this story is hard to believe, and you wouldn’t be alone. The McCormick County (South Carolina) Sheriff’s Office got several strange calls early Tuesday they couldn’t believe at first.

“It’s something you would probably see in Australia you know, but seeing it right here in Clark’s Hill like that is kind of weird,” said Clarks Hill neighbor Willie Harmon.

Sam Marshall owns a convenience store just off Highway 28, and Tuesday morning his store was abuzz with talk of the roo running rampant.

“It gets everybody excited, and then has them wondering what’s going on. Seeing a kangaroo in this part of the country,” said Marshall.

The kangaroo escaped from a local farm, and once word got out everyone wanted to catch a glimpse of the animal.

The Sheriff’s Office says their phones were ringing off the hook starting at 5:30 a.m. Tuesday!

“We got five calls into our dispatch this morning that said there’s a kangaroo off the road,” said Sheriff Clark Sterns.

The sheriff says deputies tracked down the owner, and they left catching the kangaroo to him.

“We, sure enough, verified that he did have a kangaroo, he verified that it was not in his pen and that he was making arrangement to come bring it back to his pen,” said Sheriff Sterns.

But he says if they didn’t find the owner, it could have been a different story.

“We would’ve contacted the Department of Natural Resources and seen what recommendation they would have, whether it be a tranquilizer or netting it or trying to wrangle it in a pen. Whatever their recommendations would be we would try to follow.”

Sheriff Sterns goes on to say this was an unusual day, even for a farming area.

"Livestock on the railroad tracks and in the roadways is kind of common in McCormick, but a kangaroo is a little bit part of a different story."

The incident was definitely uncommon, but not illegal in the Palmetto state.

"They can have exotic animals. They just have to get permitted, licensed, and bonded, and then they can have exotic animals," said Sheriff Sterns.

Marshall says he thought the peacocks he saw along the highway a while back were pretty crazy, but after this, he says nothing can surprise him.

"Just another day in Clarks Hill!"

We're told the kangaroo was eventually corralled by his owner and is now safe and sound.

No drivers were hurt, other than a few cases of whiplash from the double takes.