Police shoot escaped chimpanzee in northwest Vegas - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Police shoot escaped chimpanzee in northwest Vegas

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Police tape off a section of Ann Road while officers searched for two chimpanzees. (Justin Grant/FOX5) Police tape off a section of Ann Road while officers searched for two chimpanzees. (Justin Grant/FOX5)
Police search for the escaped chimps (Courtesy: Justin Grant/FOX5) Police search for the escaped chimps (Courtesy: Justin Grant/FOX5)
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

Las Vegas Metro police shot and killed a chimpanzee and tranquilized another after the animals escaped from a home on the city's northwest side Thursday.

Residents and motorists in the area were forced to lock their doors during the nearly two-hour ordeal that began just after 10 a.m. in the area of Ann Road and Jones Boulevard.

Police classified the chimps as "dangerous" and said an officer fired on one of the animals - a male - as it crossed a street.

"He couldn't allow the considerably sized animal to cross Ann Road into Rock Creek," Officer Marcus Martin said, "That's when he used his service gun to stop the animal."

"I think the police officer did the right thing, shooting one of them because they were very distraught," witness Hannah Stevens told FOX5.

But some neighbors questioned whether the officer's actions were necessary.

"They could have taken them to a zoo, taken them to a safe place," Greta Stone said. "They could have caught him and taken him back."

A female chimp was tranquilized nearby and taken into custody. It was unknown if the chimp would be immediately returned to its owner.

Authorities said both animals stood more than 5-feet tall and weighed as much as 180 pounds.

A motorist who spoke with FOX5 said one of the chimps confronted her as she drove through the area. The animal began banging on the roof and hood of her car, she said, but did not get inside.

"They were very agitated," Martin said.

The owners of the chimps have been identified as David and Sheri Potochan. Police said they had responded to their residence in the past for a domestic dispute.

Stay with FOX5 for updates to this breaking story.

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