Wayward Ottawa elk shot dead by police

Doug Hempstead, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:42 PM ET

OTTAWA - Cops say they had no choice but to shoot and kill an 800-pound wild elk that wandered into downtown Ottawa Tuesday morning.

The potentially dangerous situation started shortly after 7:30 a.m. when people heading to work at the City Centre complex on Scott St. noticed the large, antlered animal in the scrub beside the O-Train tracks.

A six-hour standoff ensued — with the street closed in both directions to both vehicles and pedestrians.

Police planned to shoot the animal with a tranquillizer gun and most onlookers believed that was the case until the animal was taken down with a single, loud shot from a high-powered rifle.

"It's so sad," said Bilge Diker, who couldn't stop crying. "I just came here to see the rescue. I just told my colleagues they killed him."

Ottawa police acting Insp. John McGetrick appeared emotional as well after the fatal shot was ordered.

"We're upset, too," he said. "I understand they're upset. The officers involved are upset. No one wanted to do this. Unfortunately, there were no other options. I completely empathize with anyone who's upset, but we're all upset."


Videos

Photos