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Woman climbs into elephant enclosure at L.A. Zoo

December 28, 2011 |  7:35 am

A woman somehow managed to climb into the elephant enclosure Tuesday at the Los Angeles Zoo, where she walked right up to the animals and petted them.

The woman, who has not yet been identified, was able to cross ditches and climb fences to get into the elephant pen.

The incident was captured on video by another visitor to the zoo.

As she walked up to the elephants, onlookers screamed at her in an effort to get her to leave the enclosure, which houses three elephants.

Zoo staffers also urged her to get out. She left voluntarily, climbing out the same way she got in.

One witness said she was inside for about five minutes.

"She went in to kind of check the elephants out," said Branden Adams, who shot the video of the woman. "She comes out and she says, 'I'm going to go pet the elephants now.' And she goes and she started touching the elephants and seeing what they were doing."

Police took the woman into custody and she revealed she was suffering from mental ailments and had not taken her medications, authorities said. She was taken to a hospital.

Zoo officials said they felt the barriers protecting the recently expanded elephant exhibit were adequate to safeguard the animals and visitors.

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-- KTLA News

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