Knut Needed Hug: Zoo Intruder
Unidentified man scales wall to get closer to polar bear in Berlin
By Rebecca Smith Hurd,  Newser User
Posted Dec 22, 2008 1:05 PM CST
The Berlin Zoo's baby bear Knut was the German capital's hottest celebrity in March 2007 at the tender age of 16 weeks.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – A German man says he climbed over a Berlin Zoo barrier today because the polar bear needed a hug, Bloomberg reports. The unidentified man, 37, apparently believed the animal—which drew 3.2 million visitors last year—was lonely. “He wanted to keep Knut company,” police said. Knut, abandoned as a cub, was once offered a movie deal and graced the cover of Vanity Fair.

The intruder was arrested, charged with disturbing the peace, and released. “It was very dangerous for him, but also dangerous for the animal,” a zoo official said. Neither the bear nor his visitor was injured.