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Circus Elephants Riot at Suburban Mall

May 19, 1995

HANOVER, Pa. (AP) _ An impatient driver’s honking horn spooked a line of circus elephants outside a shopping mall, causing a near-riot that left windows smashed, cars dented and one pachyderm injured.

Several confused, trumpeting elephants lumbered through the parking lot Thursday at the North Hanover Mall, breaking a van window and sitting on several cars. They also crashed through windows at a Sears Auto Service store.

``They just went between the cars like they were Matchbox cars,″ said Addi Scholle of Littlestown. ``The trainers were chasing after them. The elephants were going crazy, making all kinds of noise. We were scared.″

One of the half-dozen elephants with the Clyde Beatty-Cole Bros. Circus was cut and was treated by a veterinarian.

``I work with large animals,″ said Dr. Donald L. Yorlets, who was delivering a calf when he was called. ``Usually not this large.″

With a worried crowd watching and Freda swatting her trunk back and forth, Yorlets injected her with an anesthetic and stitched up the wound.

Denise Hobart, marketing director for the circus, said the driver of a pickup truck was to blame.

``He was behind the elephants, he was impatient, and he was a hot rod or trying to be cool, and he scared the elephants,″ she said.

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