Chimp escapes zoo, goes berserk when shot with tranquilizer gun; video

A chimp escaped from a zoo in northern Japan, eluded capture by climbing an electric pole and went berserk when finally shot with a tranquilizing dart.

Chacha, one of five chimpanzees at the Yagiyama Zoological Park in Sendai, was noticed to be missing by staff members around 1:20 p.m. Thursday, according to The Japan Times. As precautions, the zoo was closed, and a nearby school went into lockdown as the search for the chimp began.

Chacha was spotted in a nearby residential area climbing on a power pole, with rescuers in pursuit.

Two men, one with a tranquilizing gun, were lifted up to the chimp for a closer shot, and when the chimp was hit by the dart … suffice it to say he was not happy, as seen in the video provided by The New York Times:

Once struck by the dart, Chacha went after his rescuers, baring his teeth and making a futile lunge at them while hanging on to the power lines.

The chimp then easily crossed the power lines. At the next power pole, it appeared he might have gotten a shock from the line before his actions slowed and he eventually fell into a blanket held by rescuers below, thus ending the nearly two-hour ordeal.

A local elementary school was ordered not to allow the 400 students to leave until the chimp was captured.

"When I saw [the chimpanzee] on television, it was quite big, so we thought it was dangerous to let the children out," Takashi Yamaguchi, the school's vice principal, told The Japan Times.

Fortunately nobody was hurt in the incident. Global News and The Associated Press reported that zoo officials are investigating how the chimp escaped.

The Yagiyama Zoological Park, which opened in 1965, is city run and holds 478 animals. It is located in the Miyagi Prefecture capital, where the finance ministers from the Group of Seven industrialized nations will meet in May.

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