Last week, a “hostile” zebra attacked a man near Columbus, Ohio, biting his arm so badly that he had to be put in a tourniquet.
According to The Washington Post, no one was quite sure who owned the zebras, or why the man was in the field at the time. The 911 dispatcher who picked up the victim’s desperate call certainly didn’t waste time on those questions.
“You got attacked by a what?” the dispatcher allegedly asked. The man, a 72-year-old named Ronald Clifton, confirmed that his assailant was, in fact, a zebra. He then resumed his request, this time begging for help.
“Come before it gets me again!”
An ambulance and several police cars were immediately dispatched to the scene. They found Clifton lying on the ground, covered in blood. His elbow gushed from an open wound. Medical personnel strapped on a tourniquet to stop the bleeding and rushed Clifton to the hospital. But as the rest of the authorities were standing in the field to assess the scene, the aggressive male zebra reappeared.
They tried to scare it off, but the animal just kept on the attack. He was reportedly “very hostile”, ramming into a police cruiser and charging the authorities again and again. After several attacks, one of the officers lifted a gun and fired, reportedly in self-defense. The zebra rolled once, then dropped dead.
After further questioning, it was revealed that Clifton owned the zebras. He had been keeping them for years without any trouble, and he never expected to be charged by his animals on his own property. That expectation may come as a surprise. After all, zebras have a reputation for being aggressive. They’ve been known to bite humans, deal fatal kicks to one another and even fight to the death. Like territorial moose or elk, they’re wild creatures and don’t share the temperaments of domesticated farm animals.
According to reporting by WSYX, Clifton is currently receiving hospital treatment and is not likely to lose his arm. As for the zebras? The rest of the herd doesn’t seem to have mounted any violent plots to avenge their dead brethren, but WSYX predicts that they’ll be confiscated nevertheless.
Most docile Zebra in Ohio.