Police, owner chase loose emu in Massachusetts

By Ben Hooper
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Oct. 15 (UPI) -- A pair of Massachusetts police officers conducting a traffic stop ended up chasing an emu they spotted running loose across a street.

The Franklin Police Department said in a Facebook post that Officer Andressa Rosa and Sgt. Jason Reilly were finishing up a traffic stop when they saw the large, Australia-native bird run across Lincoln street.


Police found the owner of the emu, which was named Pippa, and together they set off on a chase that also involved an animal control officer and the Franklin Police Safety Division.

"We tracked her for an hour through the woods," owner Kathy Gatchell told WFXT-TV. "She didn't let us get too close, as soon as we got close she'd run."

Gatchell's family tried playing emu calls on their phones to calm the bird.

The calls were enough to allow Pippa's pursuers to reach her.

"I just put it in my pocket and tiptoed over to her, and when I got close, I pet her and then I just jumped on her back and hoped for the best," Ashley Gatchell said. "And it worked out."

Reilly said one of the officers then removed a sock and placed it over the emu's head, calming the bird.


The pursuers "were able to bring the emu home where it can no longer terrorize motorists of Lincoln Street," the police Facebook post said.

Police thanked everyone who helped with the capture.

"No job too small no bird too big!" the post said.

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