Monday, December 31, 2018
FORT MILL, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina man said some swift kicks and stomps saved him from a coyote attack.
John Somjak said he was taking corn cobs to a wildlife camera he set up in the woods behind a friend's home in Fort Mill when the coyote ran toward him around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.
"He wasn't going for the corn," Somjak told The Herald of Rock Hill. "He wasn't foaming at the mouth and it looked really healthy, but he was coming toward me. I kicked him under the chin as hard as I could."
Somjak then stomped the animal a few times. Thinking it was dead, he went back to his car to get a knife and a camera.
"That coyote came back again," Somjak said. "He came right up to me."
Somjak said he used the knife to kill the animal, then used a rope to hang it from a branch so other animals wouldn't eat it before it could be tested for rabies.
Somjak's only injury? An X-ray the next day found a hairline fracture of his knee. Somjak said he apparently stomped too hard.
"That's what adrenaline will do, I guess," he said.
Somjak says he was surprised at how aggressive the coyote was in a residential area. There are woods in the immediate area, but it isn't far to four subdivisions and the Carowinds amusement park.
Somjak said he has seen hundreds of coyotes, bobcats, bears, and deer in woods the past few decades, but they never engage him.
"In the heat of it, everything was happening," Somjak said. "I knew if I turned my back on him, I knew he was going to bite me."
Authorities said if anyone sees a coyote, it is best to stay away and call 911.