Monday, March 24, 2008

Escaped steer shot after charging police officer

Thursday, March 20th, 2008

A Mississauga, Ont., community was taken hostage by a herd of cattle for nearly four hours on Thursday morning.

Four steer who escaped from a transport truck during a morning accident made their way to a residential area around Brentano Boulevard near Highway 427 and the Queen Elizabeth Way.

More than 20 officers, animal control workers and farmers were involved in rounding up the nervous animals.

Police managed to contain the animals and were leading them into the back of a truck when one of them escaped.

One steer was eventually shot after it knocked a couple of residents off their feet and charged a police officer.

The animal was killed by an officer's service revolver as a last-minute defence, OPP Const. Dave Woodford told CTV Toronto.

Police said the animals caused some property damage. An ambulance was on the scene but there were no serious injuries reported.

Residents said they were shocked to see the large cattle roaming their neighbourhood.

"What made me nervous was the OPP cars had blocked us in and one (officer) was standing at my neighbour's across the street with a shotgun," said a woman named Theresa. "At first I thought maybe it was a criminal or something, not a cow."

"It was a major distraction for someone who's self-employed because it's really hard to continue working when there's four cows in your neighbourhood," Dorothy Pilarski said with a laugh.

The cattle situation caused delays during the morning traffic rush on the Queen Elizabeth Way.

A transport truck carrying the animals overturned on the highway at about 6:40 a.m. The driver of the truck was not injured in the accident.

Police managed to get the cattle off the road, closing the highway for nearly one hour in the process. All lanes were reopened by 7:30 a.m.

With a report from CTV Toronto's Naomi Parness

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