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SAN FRANCISCO - The San Francisco Zoo was closed to visitors Wednesday as investigators returned to the scene to determine how a tiger escaped from its enclosure and attacked three visitors, killing one of the men and mauling two others.
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"We don't know how it was able to get out, "Robert Jenkins, director of animal care at the zoo, told the San Francisco Chronicle. "The tiger should not have been able to jump (out). This is the first thing we will be investigating."
The tiger, a 4-year-old Siberian named Tatiana, was the same animal that chewed a zookeeper's arm in an attack during a public feeding demonstration a year ago, the Chronicle reported. The victim, a man thought to be in his 20s, was found near the tiger enclosure. The two men were injured at a nearby cafe, which is where police confronted the tiger -- who was standing on one of the injured men.
The tiger display, known as a "grotto," is surrounded by a 15-foot-wide moat and a 20-foot-high wall, the Chronicle reported. There were no obvious signs of damage that might explain how the animal escaped.
The San Francisco medical examiner had not been able to identify the dead man, investigator Tim Hellman said Wednesday. The man did not have any identification and no one had called asking about him, according to Hellman.
Animal expert Jack Hanna, director emeritus at the Columbus Zoo, told Canada AM on Thursday that a shoe was found in the moat "with a blood trail from the wall back to fence.Hanna said the shoe could signal what might have happened before the attack.
"If this did happen and you were tantalizing an animal with your feet over the wall, it's like going to a big NASCAR race and going out on the track over the fence," he said.
Originally posted by MajorMalfunction
Unfortunately, I just found out the tiger was shot on the scene by SFPD.
Once it has a taste for humans, though ... not much you can do, I guess.
Originally posted by testrat
How the old saying goes, if you mess with the bull you'll get the horns.
Two days after an escaped tiger killed a teenager at the San Francisco Zoo, the zoo director acknowledged Thursday that the wall around the animal's enclosure was 12 feet - well below the height recommended by the main accrediting agency for the nation's zoos.
According to the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, the minimum recommended height for tiger exhibit walls is 16.4 feet.