Local

New details in Rodeo bull escape

Monday, March 08, 2010
Bull at Houston Rodeo

They paid good money to see cowboys take on dangerous bulls at Reliant arena, but those smiles turned into panic when horns were suddenly coming their direction.

Questions still surround how the bull could have escaped. It got free and made its way through a crowd before it was finally corralled. And now, we're getting a better look at what went wrong.

Video shot by an eyewitness at Reliant Sunday showed the bull 'Hardball' making a hard break for freedom.

"We were like, what's going to happen? Where is the bull going to go?" wondered witness Amalia Schneider.

Schneider was just leaving the Rodeo with her husband, son and young daughter.

"Everyone was screaming, 'Careful, it's a bull. Watch out,'" she said. "Everybody was running."

Schneider says a police officer whisked her 6-year-old boy to safety.

Rodeo officials say a wrangler and security guard were injured trying to stop the bull. Police even used a Taser on it without success.

We're told the bull, which was an extra on hand in a holding pen for reruns during the Rodeo, became spooked as chuck wagons exited.

"They went right past the bull, scared him and he ran forward and into the front gate and he hit it with such force that he pulled the locking pin away from the side," said Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo CEO Leroy Shafer.

The bull was finally caught in an employee parking lot when a wrangler borrowed a rope and a horse from a nearby calf roper and gave chase.

"I can look anyone in the eye and tell you this isn't going to happen again," said Shafer.

The wrangler and a security guard suffered minor injuries. They were treated at a nearby hospital and released. The bull, 'Hardball,' has been selected for a ride Wednesday night.

About the wrangler

According to Rodeo Houston officials, the wrangler who roped the bull last night is Bronc Boehnlein. When the bull broke out, he borrowed a horse and rope from a calf roper who was in the area and joined the men who were trying to corral the bull. He lives in Sacramento and left town Monday.
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If you caught photos or video of this news event, you can send them to ABC13 Eyewitness News here.

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rodeo houston, local, kevin quinn
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