Horse tosses deputy, then steps on him while on duty

James David Dickson
The Detroit News

Addison Township — A deputy in the mounted unit of the Oakland County Sheriff's Office was thrown from his horse, which then stepped on his chest and leg Sunday morning during a monthly training session at a county park.

The incident took place just before 10:15 a.m. at Addison Oaks County Park in Addison Township. The park is off West Romeo and east of Lake George Road.

The sheriff's office says the deputy, a 28-year-old, three-year veteran of the mounted unit, was tossed from his horse and stepped on while at the park.

Lt. Todd Hill of the sheriff's office's parks unit told The News that "the unit was moving in a column of twos down the road to an open field" where training was being conducted in noise and movement desensitization. 

The horses are owned by the deputies who ride them, Hill said. The deputy injured Sunday is a five-year veteran of the department who has been with that particular horse for five months.

Paramedics from the Addison Township Fire Department treated the deputy, and he was taken to Ascension-Providence hospital in Rochester for evaluation. On Monday he was released.

Hill said the deputy was tossed while preparing for an emergency dismount "when the horse lowered his head, causing the deputy to be ejected off the front, at an angle."

Once he is fully recovered, which is expected to take weeks, the horse will be evaluated "to ensure this will not be a common occurrence," Hill said, adding that the horse is normally calm and has never behaved in such a way before.

"It is unknown exactly why the horse behaved (in) this manner," Hill said.