Police shoot and kill escaped circus tiger in Atlanta

The Bengal tiger was shot dead after it escaped from a truck and briefly roamed a suburban Atlanta neighbourhood.
The Bengal tiger was shot dead after it escaped from a truck and briefly roamed a suburban Atlanta neighbourhood. PHOTO: HENRY COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT/FACEBOOK

ATLANTA (REUTERS) - Police shot a Bengal tiger on Wednesday (Sept 6) after it escaped from a truck and briefly roamed a suburban Atlanta neighbourhood.

The female tiger, which once performed for the Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus, escaped when the truck carrying it and other large cats made an overnight stop outside Atlanta.

"When the tiger became aggressive towards pets in the area, it was deemed necessary for public safety to put it down, and it was done quickly and humanely," said authorities.

An examination of the dead cat revealed a microchip tracing it to Feld Entertainment, parent company of Ringling Bros.

A Feld spokesman said the tiger belonged to an act contracted with the circus which ceased operations in May. "We were helping to transport the cats from Florida to Tennessee ahead of them going to Europe," he said.