Authorities believe the aggressive fox that reportedly attacked two people earlier Monday in Monmouth was shot by a resident Monday evening.

Though unable to confirm that the fox that was shot is the same one that attacked two people earlier in the day, police said a fox was shot by a resident at 10 Berry Road at approximately 7 p.m., next door to an 11 Berry Road home where a man reported he was attacked by a fox around 8:34 a.m. Monday.

The fox was reportedly attacking the resident’s chickens when it was shot and killed.

“It was shot by a homeowner on Berry Road, while it was attacking chickens,” Patrolman Aaron Paradis said Monday evening. “It literally had a chicken in its mouth as he shot it.”

Paradis said police contacted the Maine Warden Service to have a warden try to confirm it was the same gray fox involved in the previous incidents.

“We’re assuming” it is, Paradis said. “At this point we don’t have 100 percent confirmation that it’s the same fox.”

Paradis declined to identify the homeowner who shot the fox, saying he did not have permission to release his identification.

Reports that two people were attacked by a gray fox on Monday in Monmouth prompted Maine game wardens and police to launch an intense search for the animal.

The fox, which authorities suspect has rabies, did not break the skin of either person, but the animal’s unusual behavior prompted a warning from officials to be on guard.

Paradis said police do not believe anyone had physical contact with the fox when it was shot.

“I’m sure this won’t be the last call reference this animal,” Game Warden Steve Allarie said earlier Monday before the fox was shot.

The first attack was reported around 8:34 a.m. from a person at 11 Berry Road near the Main Street intersection. The caller said the fox attacked him and bit his boot. The man, whom Allarie did not identify, was able to kick the fox off.

“There was no transfer of saliva or bite to the skin,” Allarie said.

The second complaint came about 20 minutes later when Jared Stevens, who lives at 814 Main St., just two houses north of Cumston Hall, reported a fox attacked him and bit his sneaker as he stood outside his home. Stevens, who was wearing shorts, was able to kick the fox free before it bit through his sneaker or dropped saliva on his exposed legs.

Allarie and Monmouth Police officer Mike Parshall unsuccessfully searched the area for the fox for more than two hours.

“It’s all densely populated,” Parshall said. “It needs to be taken care of.”

Stevens, who was working with a few other men on his house Monday morning, saw the fox in his driveway and yelled for his friends, who were on the roof, to see it.

“When I said that, I think I got its attention,” Stevens said of the fox.

The animal started walking toward Stevens, even following him onto his porch. Stevens put his foot out to fend off the animal.

“The thing kept coming at me and latched onto my sneaker,” Stevens said.

He stomped down on the fox, trying to crush its head and kill it, but could only deliver a few blows before the fox scurried off.

The fox’s appearance, which Stevens said was scraggly, and demeanor indicated it is a very sick animal, Stevens said.

“I didn’t pose a threat, but he was not afraid to walk directly at me,” he said. “They don’t walk up on decks.”

Stevens, who suspects the fox in an attack last week that killed three of his neighbor’s chickens, said he’d recently seen the animal with three babies, or kits.

Allarie said the presence of the kits fails to explain the fox’s behavior.

“With the level of aggression this one showed, it goes well beyond protecting the young,” he said. “There’s obviously something wrong with it. I suspect if we have it tested it will come back rabid.”

The only way to test the fox is to capture it and analyze its brain.

“We searched (under) every deck on Main Street,” Allarie said. “There are a lot of them.”

Parshall and Allarie urged anyone who sees a fox to keep their distance and call police as soon as possible.

“Make as much noise as possible and do not turn your back on this animal,” Allarie said. “Walk backwards, get inside the house and call police.”

Stevens, who tried to retrieve his gun in time to shoot the fox after the attack, said he is leery of seeing the animal again.

“By no means do you want this thing running around in circles biting people,” he said. “I’m definitely looking over my shoulder now.”

Paradis said a Route 135 resident also reported seeing the fox during the day Monday, when it came up to the resident’s front door.

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