An aggressive sheep was shot and killed after it was determined to be responsible for the deaths of an older New Zealand couple.

A man went looking for his mother and father Thursday after not hearing from them for a few days. The couple, both in their 80s, lived at a rural rented property in Waitākere, West Auckland.

When he entered the property's paddock, he found both of his parents, Alfred Helge Hansen, 82, and Gaye Carole Hansen, 81, dead.

According to the New Zealand Herald, authorities believe the man was killed when he went out to feed the ram. His wife suffered the same fate when she went out to check on her husband.

A statement from police said they discovered the bodies around 7:30 a.m. local time. They found the ram in the paddock when they arrived.

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They said another person at the scene had also “suffered a minor injury after being attacked by this ram,” and that when police arrived at the scene, “they too were confronted and approached by the ram.”

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Police said they shot and killed the aggressive animal at the scene.

Dean Burrell, the nephew of one of the dead and family spokesperson, told news outlet Stuff that the couple had “both lost their lives in a tragic accident."

“They’re good people. They’re over 80. They don’t deserve this,” he said.

“Everyone is in shock as to what’s happened. They are very upset.”

Police are investigating the deaths on behalf of the coroner “to establish the full set of circumstances around what occurred in the paddock,” and a postmortem examination will be carried out on Friday.

2024-04-19T21:00:02Z dg43tfdfdgfd