Man takes Tiger for a walk

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Police in suburban Lockport, Ill., 30 miles south of Chicago, are not laughing after a tiger cub took a stroll through the city's downtown on Sunday - albeit on the end of a leash, the station says.

The tiger and its owner, John Basile, were earlier spotted inside Uncle Richie's Bar, reports CBS Chicago's Derrick Blakely.

Basile's tiger apparently bit a woman in the bar in December, although she never reported it, Blakely reports.
Now John Basile faces misdemeanor charges of reckless conduct and possession of a dangerous animal.

"My concern was really for the people who frequent the downtown area," Lockport Police Chief Terry Lemming said.

Basile runs the Big Run Wolf Ranch just outside Lockport, which CBS Chicago describes as a collection of cages where he keeps wolves, mountain lions and the tiger.

His ranch is a federally licensed business that invites the public for scheduled open houses and takes the animals for show to schools and charities, the station reports.

Basile's attorneys said he "has been cooperative with the authorities and looks forward to his opportunity to address the allegations in court."

He has been rescuing, housing, and teaching with wild animals for nearly 30 years "without incident," they said.

Join the Conversation!

To comment, the following rules must be followed:

  • No Obscenity, Profanity, Vulgarity, Racism or Violent Descriptions
  • No Negative Community Comparisons
  • No Fighting, Name-calling, or Personal Attacks
  • Multiple Accounts are Not Allowed
  • Stay on Story Topic

Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content, but the station is under no legal obligation to do so.
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.

Multiple violations may result in account suspension.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Links require admin approval before posting.
Questions may be sent to Please provide detailed information.

powered by Disqus


6450 Papermill Drive Knoxville, TN 37919 Phone - (865) 450-8888; Fax - (865) 450-8869
Copyright © 2014 WVLT-TV Inc. - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 247678411 -
Gray Television, Inc.