WATCH: Maryland sheriff shoots and kills a groundhog that was 'not responding' to his directions
Cop shooting a groundhog

A Maryland police officer shot a groundhog that was blocking traffic, reports CBS News.

The video first spread on Twitter and people were disgusted that the police would kill a harmless animal.

The sheriff said that the groundhog was "causing vehicles to stop and creating a hazard."

The department released this statement:

"The deputy was traveling on Rt 26 in the area of White Rock Road when he observed traffic backing up along the road. He found that the groundhog in question was walking into the roadway, causing vehicles to stop and creating a hazard. He got out of his vehicle to assess, and as he tried to direct the groundhog off of the roadway, he realized that it was not responding as expected for an animal that was not being cornered or trapped. Believing the groundhog to be either sick or injured, the deputy then put the animal down for the public's safety."

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