published Sunday, June 2nd, 2013

Sheriff’s deputies taser llama when it escapes penned-in yard in Tallahassee




Leon County officials work in this June 1, 2013, photo to corner Scooter, a 7-year-old llama that was on the loose in Tallahassee, Fla. Scooter had to be subdued with a Taser, authorities said Sunday.
Leon County officials work in this June 1, 2013, photo to corner Scooter, a 7-year-old llama that was on the loose in Tallahassee, Fla. Scooter had to be subdued with a Taser, authorities said Sunday.
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — When Scooter the llama busted out of his penned-in yard in Tallahassee, it took three county sheriff’s deputies and a taser gun to get him back in again.

The 6-foot-tall, 7-year-old llama outran the authorities in Tallahassee for a while, even leaping over a 4-foot fence to avoid capture, Leon County Lt. Tony Drzewiecki said Sunday.

“Scooter was running in the middle of the road, so he was going to cause an accident eventually,” Drzewiecki said.

Outside of Tampa, meanwhile, authorities chased an errant kangaroo for 10 hours before finally getting close enough Sunday to stop him with tranquilizer darts.

Scooter’s owner, Jack Conrad, discovered him missing sometime Friday night and searched for him until the early morning hours of Saturday, Drzewiecki said.

Authorities also heard from concerned residents. One reported a camel on the loose; another claimed to have spied an alpaca trotting by.

Police cornered the furry fugitive Saturday morning. After putting a lasso around its neck, it took six deputies to place the roughly 300-pound Scooter into a trailer. Drzewiecki said they used a taser gun to subdue the animal because llamas don’t respond to voice commands.

Conrad, Scooter’s owner and the owner of three other llamas, will not be cited but has agreed to beef up his fence line, Drzewiecki said. Conrad could not be reached for comment Sunday.

Llamas are considered a domestic species and do not require a permit, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

In the town of Lacoochee, Fla., authorities Sunday were still searching for the owner of a 200-pound male kangaroo that they captured after a nearly 10-hour chase.

A family living in the area owns other kangaroos, but has not yet claimed this one as theirs, said Pasco County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Melanie Snow.

Wildlife officials say a person can own a kangaroo if they have the specific permits to do so.

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