1. Headline
  1. Headline
msnbc.com staff and news service reports
updated 10/17/2011 7:27:41 AM ET 2011-10-17T11:27:41

A circus elephant trampled to death a girl who was attempting to feed it, police in Vietnam said Monday.

  1. Stories from
    1. 12-Year-Old with Rare Always-Hungry Condition Lands Back in Hospital
    2. Who Still Makes Jamie Foxx Starstruck?
    3. Ginnifer Goodwin's Romantic Monique Lhuillier Wedding Gown: See a Sketch!
    4. Three Books by Gabriel Garcia Marquez That You Must Read
    5. Julia Roberts, Mark Ruffalo Shine in The Normal Heart Trailer

Police officer Pham Ngoc Tien of Lao Cai province said the elephant was part of a troupe from Hanoi on a 10-day tour of the province. The animal was tied to a chain in the fenced backyard of a cultural center when it was not performing.

Tien said Monday that the 11-year-old girl and several other children had entered its enclosure. The girl was feeding the elephant when it lifted her up with its trunk, threw her to the ground and trampled her repeatedly.

Police officer Phan Van Quang told AFP that Nguyen Thao Anh was offering the elephant sugarcane. "She was trampled to death on the spot", he added.

Nguyen Xuan Quang, deputy director of the Vietnam Circus Federation, reportedly said that children had been teasing the animal prior to Sunday's incident. Speaking to AFP, Quang added that the victim's father was talking on the phone at the time.

The Associated Press and msnbc.com staff contributed to this report.

Discuss:

Discussion comments

,

Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments

More on TODAY.com

TODAY's Takeaway
  1. TODAY

    Savannah overshares; Billy Crystal brings ‘700 Sundays’ to TV

    4/18/2014 8:29:08 PM +00:00 2014-04-18T20:29:08
  1. Doomed South Korean ferry’s captain taken into custody

    The captain of the sunken ferry in South Korea was taken into custody Friday and is facing five charges, including criminal negligence.

    4/18/2014 8:35:55 PM +00:00 2014-04-18T20:35:55
  2. Did South Korea ferry’s sharp turn cause it to sink?
  3. Teen ferry survivors comforted in devastated town
  1. Courtesy of Shawn Stock

    'You helped me': After 23 years, Desert Storm veteran thanks pen pals

    4/18/2014 8:51:52 PM +00:00 2014-04-18T20:51:52
  1. Courtesy of Kristen Hazelwood Jo

    Kids scared of the Easter Bunny? Well, look at him!

    4/18/2014 7:18:23 PM +00:00 2014-04-18T19:18:23
  1. This weekend on TODAY: Apps to keep teens from texting and driving

    Janice Lieberman takes a look at three new apps that are designed to keep your teens safe behind the wheel. Also, Ed Weeks from “The Mindy Project," the right way to cook a perfect Easter ham and more.

    4/18/2014 4:41:45 PM +00:00 2014-04-18T16:41:45