A steer who has been on the run for six weeks was finally captured when authorities enlisted the help of a local cowboy who lassoed the animal on a Michigan interstate, as seen in a video that has since gone viral.
Ricky Littlejohn, a professional cowcatcher, was called by authorities to help wrangle a runaway steer who had been spotted wandering around Oakland County for approximately six weeks, WXYZ reported. The steer, known as Lester, was one of five cows left behind when an animal rescue and rehabilitation facility called The Devoted Barn was evicted from a property near Holly, another report from WXYZ indicated.
A steer named Lester has been on the loose for six weeks! But his two-month vacation came to an exciting end over the weekend when Lester was lassoed by Ricky Littlejohn. https://t.co/C7jDF6SKs9
— WXYZ Detroit (@wxyzdetroit) May 23, 2023
For weeks, local resident Gretchen Sommer has been attempting to get Oakland County Animal Control and the Michigan Humane Society to apprehend the escaped steer, telling the outlet her “greatest fear” was that someone would hit Lester with their car and hurt themselves and the animal.
That concern proved to be valid as Lester was spotted near the I-75 interstate, prompting authorities to call in Littlejohn.” They called me and were like, ‘Hey, is there any way you can help?’ And I was a little nervous about going because it’s super dangerous to be on the highway and whatnot,” Littlejohn told WXYZ.
In a video from a Michigan trooper’s dash cam, Littlejohn and his team can be seen roping the steer as it races into fast-moving traffic on the interstate, turning the cowboy and his team into local celebrities.
“Oh yeah, it’s been crazy. My phone has been nonstop,” Littlejohn told WKYZ. “All the ‘Yellowstone’ comments and all sorts of stuff, they put music behind the video and everything. It’s been pretty entertaining.” (RELATED: Emu Escapes, Leads Owners And Police On Multi-City Chase)
Trina Resendez, a member of Littlejohn’s team and the cowboy’s fiancé, helped wrangle the steer before it was hit by a car.“As he was fighting, I put another rope on it and kind of worked as a team after that,” Resendez told the outlet in a separate interview. “It’s kind of scary seeing something like that run out on the highway because it’s a 1,200-pound animal running out into people that don’t know what’s going on.”
Austin Collier, another member of the cow-catching team, told the outlet he had never witnessed anything like it. “It was just really cool to be a part of. It was a dangerous situation and could’ve been a lot worse.”