Escaped lion captured near Rome after hours-long hunt
A lion that escaped from a circus near Rome, sparking panic in the seaside town of Ladispoli, was captured late on Saturday (November 11) after several hours on the run.
The lion, named "Kimba", escaped from the "Rony Roller" circus and was caught and sedated after an around seven-hour hunt by local authorities.
In the afternoon, Ladispoli Mayor Alessandro Grando warned local residents to stay at home while police and circus staff attempted to catch the adult lion, with footage showing the animal roaming around the town streets.
Search activities were hampered by darkness and involved a police helicopter, which located the animal in a rural area with the help of infrared sensors.
''What happened is very strange. The lion got out, and there is an ongoing investigation because the dynamics are not clear. All we can say is that a lion does not have the ability to open a latch and break a lock'', animal supervisor and trainer at ''Rony Roller'' Circus, Rony Vassallo, said.
The travelling circus was scheduled to stay in Ladispoli between Nov. 9-19.
Many Ladispoli residents, after hearing the news, went to see the lion Kimba, who, after being dismounted, was brought back and locked with his brothers in a circus cage.
''I am sorry, because it is in prison. It should be in its environment, the savannah'', Ladispoli resident, Giuseppe Altavilla, said.