A bar manager was eaten alive by three lions at the Addo Croc and Lion Ranch near Port Elizabeth, South Africa on Sunday morning, SAPA reports.
Jan-Friederick Bredenhand apparently wanted to ‘play’ with the lions after an all-night party with friends, and police believe he was drunk at the time of the incident.
The 30-year-old, who worked as a barman at the game reserve, climbed up a fence pole to the lion enclosure to show his friend how big the lions were.
One of the male lions then got hold of his legs and Bredenhand was dragged into the pen, where another male and a female lion also ripped into him.
Bredenhand’s shocked friend, known only as Simon, witnessed the attack and immediately ran for help while shouting: “Please help me, my friend is being eaten by a lion”.
Tourist Veluchia Hassim woke up by the screams and described: ‘We ran to the encampment. It was horrific. The one lion was gnawing on his ribs when we got there”.
Another friend of Bredenhand, Jamiel Jonas, who also became a witness of the gruesome aftermath said: “When we got to the camp we saw the remains of his body. Most of his stomach was torn out and his leg had been ripped off.”
The owner of the wildlife resort, Johnny Janse van Rensburg, had to shoot all three lions dead so that police could enter the pen and retrieve the body – this only two weeks after had bought the business.
Van Rensburg said: “There was no reason for him to be there. He was not involved with the lions”.
“We had to put them down. The lions were in a state of mind where you can’t work with them any more.”
Police spokeswoman Gerda Swart said of the incident: “He [Bredenhand] climbed the fence around their enclosure and clearly got too close … Since he was drunk he may not have been in sound mind, but it was an incredibly dangerous and stupid thing to do”.
”People who play dangerous games with animals like lions are asking for trouble – and he got it.”
– Inger Smith