posted on Oct, 19 2011 @ 01:11 AM
This is happening in my hometown of Zanesville, Ohio, and it all started around 5:30p.m..
It all started at 270 Kopchak Road on the farm of Terry Thompson. "Deputies arrived on the scene and found animals outside the fencedarea, and we did
have to shoot them," says Sheriff Matt Lutz. Lutz says he received a call around 5:30 p.m. that 48 wild animals including lions, bears, tigers and
wolves were freed from a rescueshelter. The home belongs to 61-year-old Terry Thompson, who has afelony histoy and was recently released from prison.
"We have found Mr. Thompson at the house, and we have confirmed thathe is deceased at this point. He was found outside," says Lutz. Lutz says
Thompson's cause of death is not being released at this time.
This is only about 4 miles from my parents house, and approximately 7 from my house. Terry wasn't Zanesville's finest, to say the least.
In fact, there had been several petitions to have the animal's removed from his custody. Why? For one, they are not safe. And, for about a quarter
mile in any direction, you could smell the filth wafting off of him and his property.
In the meantime, deputies are armed with assault rifles and they aretaking down animals as they find them. The Ohio Department of NaturalResources and
the State Highway Patrol are assisting the Sheriff'sOffice. "They have a helicopter that was able to get up with the weather.They're coming in with
a heat-seeking camera to see if we can findanything loose," says Lutz.
You can bet I'll be in the tree stand all day tomorrow. If I find anything loose, I'll take many pictures and share them with you
The Wilds has also been called to bring tranquilizers to the area.Lutz says this isn't the first time Thompsons' animals have gottenout-of-control,
but he did own them legally. "We've dealt with this for a long time, and to our knowledge, it's notagainst the law for a felon to have the rescue
license and permits forthese animals," he says.
Felon's are not allowed to vote in Ohio, yet they can have dozens of extremely dangerous animal's? The wild's is and animal sanctuary that
is home to thousands of exotic animal's. Owned by Jack Hanna, it is the largest wildlife sactuary in Ohio. What makes the situation worse, is the
close proximity to schools. 3 schools are within 3.5 miles of where the animals escaped, and another is slightly further.
Zanesville, Maysville, Foxfire, Starlight and West Muskingum Schools are closed Wednesday due to the situation.
Official's are saying the animal's were let loose on purpose. What has to be going through someone mind when they knowingly release these
deadly animal's into a habitat not of their own?
No people have been injured so far and hunters have been notified to leave. "Hopefully, once we get the house and crime scene secured, we canstart
taking a body count on what we were able to kill around thehouse and in the area, and we'll have an idea of what we have left outthere," he says.
Authorities will work throughout the night. So far at least 25 animals have been killed.
Image of The Wilds.
Hopefully everyone stays safe and these animals are either captured, or killed. Although, the local news Facebook page has been blowing up
with people begging to not kill the animals. What do you think? Should the officials delay the safety of citizens and try to capture these humanely?
Or, should they eliminate the threat to the public as fast as possible?
Jack Hanna's Website
About Terry Thompson