Authorities in Maury County, Tenn., are investigating after a red stag deer that belonged to Luke Bryan was shot and killed on his private property outside of Nashville in early December.

Bryan and his family own a farm in the rural area around Columbia and Mt. Pleasant, and Nashville's Tennessean newspaper reports that the red stag was shot and killed between the evening of Dec. 4 and the early morning of Dec. 6. Bryan's farm manager reported the shooting, according to Barry Cross of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.

Cross believes the animal was shot from the road while on Bryan's private property. The Maury County Sheriff's Office is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the responsible parties.

"As an agency we appreciate our hunters who do the right thing and follow the bylaws, and it takes a second for someone to ruin it for all of us," Cross states.

Cross also tells the Tennessean that red stags are not native to the United States, which means Bryan would have had to bring the animal in. Bryan and his wife, Caroline, operate a petting zoo on their property called Brett's Barn, which features exotic animals of various kinds and provides an opportunity for sick children to interact with the animals. It is unknown if the red stag in question was part of that endeavor. The couple started Brett's Barn in honor of their late niece, Sadie Brett Boyer, who died at the age of seven months in 2017 after battling congenital heart disease.

Luke Bryan has not commented publicly on the shooting or investigation.

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