Tiger on the loose? Deputy’s claim triggers major search in Tennessee.

An Indian Bengal tiger is shown in this file photo from Jan. 28, 2006.

An Indian Bengal tiger is shown in this file photo from Jan. 28, 2006.

Manan Vatsyayana/AFP via Getty Images

If you catch a tiger by the tail — or simply catch a glimpse of it from a safe distance — please take a photo and give police a call.

Authorities in Knoxville, Tenn., launched a major man tiger hunt on Thursday after a Knox County sheriff’s deputy reported seeing one very out-of-place predator late Wednesday night.

The deputy allegedly spotted a tiger in the Forks of the River Industrial Park, a business area near a forested zone in the southeastern part of Knoxville, according to a police statement.

Deputy Andy Wilson was working a side job in the area when he claims he saw the tiger climb out of the nearby French Broad River, sheriff’s office spokesperson Kimberly Glenn told Knox News. The tiger then allegedly crossed the street and disappeared into the woods around 8:30 p.m.

“After a brief moment of shock, he realized it really was a tiger,” Glenn said. “It went into a thick area of kudzu.”

Wilson said he hadn’t fallen asleep or imagined it. It was a tiger, he told the sheriff’s office.

The sighting remains unconfirmed and the local zoo and tiger shelter are not missing any big cats, they told local station WBIR.

“We want to reassure everyone that our Zoo Knoxville Malayan tigers Arya, Bashir and Tanvir are all safely accounted for,” Zoo Knoxville wrote on Facebook Thursday.

The sheriff’s office, local animal control, the Tiger Haven animal sanctuary and state wildlife officials all joined the search for the animal early Thursday, as rumours and concern spread throughout the city and across the internet.

Trending Stories

  • Wildfires raging across Oregon, Washington may cause historic destruction: officials

  • WE Charity closing operations in Canada, Kielburger brothers to step down

No one had captured any photos of the alleged tiger by Thursday afternoon.

Three more sightings were reported on Thursday morning, police dispatchers told local station WVLT. All three sightings were in the area of Thorngrove Pike, which lies about 12 kilometres east of the Forks of the River.

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) says it only received one reported sighting in that area, but the agency set up a bear trap in the area and baited it with a chicken on Thursday afternoon in hopes of luring the beast.

It’s illegal to own a tiger in Tennessee. However, officials have dealt with the occasional wannabe Tiger King in the past, the TWRA says.

Mary Lynn Parker, who co-owns the Tiger Haven no-kill shelter, says she’s standing ready to house the wayward tiger, if it does exist.

“We have all the proper equipment to transport and house a tiger,” Parker told Knox News. “So if it was caught, we’d be able to load it in the truck and bring it to the sanctuary.”

The sheriff’s office is urging anyone who sees the tiger to give them a call.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Related news

Russian jets bomb rebel-held Syria in heaviest strikes since ceasefire six months ago.

Witnesses said the warplanes struck the western outskirts of Idlib city and that there was heavy artillery shelling in the mountainous Jabal al Zawya region in southern Idlib from nearby Syrian army outposts.

Government airstrikes kill 24 civilians in northern Afghanistan, witnesses say.

The Afghan Defence Ministry, however, said the airstrikes killed 30 Taliban fighters, but added an investigation was being made into claims that civilians were among those killed.

Goal of Trump book ‘Rage’ to portray ‘the best obtainable version of truth’: Woodward.

``I hope you're recording this, so you get it down,'' Bob Woodward says, nary a hint of irony in his voice.

Thousands march in Berlin in support of refugees displaced by large fires in Greece.

More than 12,000 migrants and refugees fled the fires, which the Greek government says were deliberately set by a small group of Afghan migrants to protest a virus lockdown at the Moria camp.

1 1

Federal judge approves injunction to delay looming WeChat ban in U.

In a ruling dated Saturday, Magistrate Judge Laurel Beeler in California said the government's actions would affect users' First Amendment rights as an effective ban on the app removes their platform for communication.

Pressure on Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko mounts as mass rallies continue.

Videos shared by local media outlets showed security forces in helmets or masks hauling protesters off the streets.

1 23

Number of COVID-19 cases confirmed worldwide exceeds 30.

The overall death toll is 957,192 people, while 21,056,061 coronavirus patients have already recovered.

Carpenters use medieval techniques to restore Notre Dame Cathedral after fire.

The demonstration to mark European Heritage Days gave the hundreds of people a first-hand look at the rustic methods used 800 years ago to build the triangular frames in the nave of Notre Dame de Paris.

Republicans hopeful filling Ginsburg’s Supreme Court spot will help shift U.

Just 44 days before Trump's reelection will be decided, Republicans are again looking to a Supreme Court nomination fight to unite a deeply fractured party as it faces the very real possibility of losing the White House and control of the Senate t...

Siluanov: Belarus To Pay $330 Million In Gazprom Debt From New Russian Loan.

Belarus will channel about $330 million of a new $1.5 billion loan from Russia to cover its outstanding debt to Russian gas giant Gazprom, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov was quoted as saying by TASS on September 20.


By continuing to browse World News (UAZMI), you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and agree to the use of cookies