An elephant on the lam from an animal sanctuary met its match when New York State Police troopers tracked down the trespassing trunked tusker.
“Never a dull moment in Troop F.,” a New York State Police spokesperson stated on Facebook. That's “Troop F”, not “F Troop”, though the latter – a Wild West-themed TV sitcom from the Sixties – wasn't exactly known for dull moments either.
That said, the events of November 11's evening could have been lifted from the plot of a classic cops & robbers comedy but for the fact that they were true. It all started when the local dispatcher got a call about an escaped elephant. Just a reminder: we're talkin' New York, not New Delhi. On the bright side, not many pachyderms are roaming wild along the NY-NJ border so when troopers came across one, they knew it had to be the big-eared escapee.
Troopers sent to the Orange County hamlet of Westtown were at a loss once they spotted the mammoth behemoth. As New York State Police trooper Sgt. Dave Scott told a reporter from ABC7NY.com: “I don't know what we would have done if we hadn't gotten a hold of the owners, it's not like you can call the local dog warden and have him pick up an elephant.”
As suspected, the wandering jumbo turned out to be Fritha, a 44-year-old rescue elephant (yes, rescue elephant) who had been burned by napalm during the Vietnam War. Fritha wandered off from her barn at the nearby Sanctuary for Animals in Minisink after a worker forgot to lock the fence, and she was only too pleased to wander back, escorted by NYSP troopers and sanctuary staff. The local dog warden definitely owes those guys a drink. (via Poughkeepsie Journal)