Monkey escapes enclosure, roams through Sanford neighborhood



SANFORD, Fla. - A 4-year-old monkey that escaped from its cage early Sunday afternoon was caught by its owner after roaming a Sanford neighborhood for hours.

 At least three streets were closed as police officers, animal control officers and friends of the owner tried to capture the animal.

 Sanford police told WFTV the animal bit a neighbor.

 Zeke, a pigtail macaque, tore through two layers of chain-link fencing to escape, said its owner, Jeff Jacques.

A neighbor, Jason Diel, said Zeke was friendly to him initially, but then became aggressive.

"He came up and tried to bite my arm," said Diel.

Another neighbor, Samuel Boyleston said, "Once I kicked it, I figured it would back off or come at me. Honestly, I was afraid for my life at one point. I've seen enough news stories of monkeys doing serious damage."

 Zeke jumped onto the roof of a police car, scaled a house and ran across a roof as people tried to catch him.

 He later retreated into some woods.

Jacques drove through the neighborhood in his truck and the monkey came out and returned to his owner.

 This is not the first time Zeke has escaped. Back in February, the monkey managed to break free of his enclosure.

 Jacques told WFTV that  because Zeke is "extremely strong and getting stronger,"  he will most likely be sent to a local animal refuge.

Police said the owner is licensed to have the animal, but it is not known if he will be fined for the escape.