Residents Come Dangerously Close To Escaped Animals


UPDATED: Wednesday October 19, 2011 10:24 PM

Several people spoke on Wednesday about their  close encounters with escaped exotic animals.

That included one man who said he came within 30 feet from a tiger, 10TV’s Tanisha Mallett reported.

Sam Kopchak lived near the property where more than 50 animals escaped in Zanesville.

Kopchak took a new horse to pasture when he first spotted a bear, then a tiger, Mallett reported.

He said that he slowly walked his horse back to the barn.

"Thank goodness we made it down to the barn, I had a little time getting him in the stall,” said Kopchak.  “Got him put away and I closed all the doors.”

Joel Harris also said he found himself near one of the escaped animals while he was driving to a friend’s house.

“I looked in my rear view mirror as we are going past and I saw something that was black and it wasn't a cow and it was really big so we turned around and went back and it was a bear,” Harris said.

After he captured video of the bear on his cell phone, Harris said he spotted a lion in the road.

“As we are sitting there looking at it, a wolf comes from the fence that the bear was in and just pops right through the fence and starts running down the road,” said Harris.

Kopchak told 10TV that he had imagined what it would be like if one of the animals got loose, but he never thought about the possibility of all the animals escaping at the same time, Mallett reported.

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