Bobcat Trapped In Coffee County Family’s Car
by Emily Luxen
MANCHESTER, Tenn. - After a routine shopping trip, a Coffee County family returned home with more than just groceries.
Angela Ridner and her family were driving home Saturday night, when they hit some kind of animal crossing the road.
"I thought it was road kill," said Angela Ridner. "I heard the impact, but by the time I saw it I couldn't hit my brakes. It was too late."
After returning home, Angela and her husband Kevin went to inspect any possible damage to the car. Instead, they found a bobcat wedged in the grille of their Dodge Charger. It was alive and unharmed.
"It was just looking at us," said Angela Ridner. "I thought, oh my goodness, this thing is big!"
Suffering from shock, the Riders decided to leave the bobcat alone, in hopes it would escape on its own. By the next morning, it was gone.
"We assume it is okay and made its way back to the woods," said Angela Ridner.
There are now bite and scratch marks on the front of the car, but overall the damage is minimal.
Angela Ridner said she is relieved the scary situation was resolved quickly.
"It could have been so much worse," said Angela Ridner. "It could of tore up the entire garage or hurt one of us."
Two of the Ridner's three sons, Cale, 11, and Clay, 7, still can't believe what they saw.
"There was a big chunk of fur sticking out," said Clay Ridner. "I thought it would jump out and come in the house and tear everything up. It did growl at Dad."
Now that the scare has subsided, Angela Ridner says they have a lot to be grateful for.
"I'm glad everyone is ok, and the bobcat is ok. It makes for a neat story." "
The Ridners said they have never seen a bobcat in their neighborhood before, but one of their neighbors did catch one recently.
The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency reports bobcats are common in Middle Tennessee. Most do come out at night, but there are no known instances of one attacking a human.