08/30/2012 01:39 pm ET | Updated Aug 31, 2012

William Bohlke, Texas Mayor, Killed By Pet Donkey

A small town in Texas is grieving for its mayor, who was killed Monday when his pet donkey attacked him.

The cause of death is still pending, but Chief Deputy David Soward of the Atascosa County Sheriff’s Office said the 500-pound donkey that Bohlke kept on his ranch is the most likely suspect.

“They [donkeys] can become very aggressive, very mean, sometimes triggered by a female in heat,” Soward told the San Antonio Express-News. “We’ll probably never know what triggered it, but it was evident that this particular donkey was involved, based on the evidence at the scene and what we saw on this donkey.”

Soward believes Bohlke's death is accidental, but didn't get specific about whether Bohlke was kicked or trampled. He told the paper, “We can just surmise, based on the evidence that we have, all of that.”

In May, Bohlke, 65, was elected mayor of Hollywood Park, a south Texas suburb north of San Antonio. It was his first run for public office after a life that included a 20-year career in the Air Force, ABC News reported.

The accused donkey remains on the ranch and Soward told CBS News that it's the family decision what to do with it.

A memorial service is scheduled for next Tuesday at a local church and Bohlke's body will be buried at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery.

Mayor pro tem Steve Phillips will serve as acting mayor of Hollywood Park until a replacement is appointed.


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