Killer Bull Gores Third Man In Ten Years

A Spanish official says a killer bull has claimed another victim, after goring to death a 29-year-old man during festivities in the eastern Valencia region.

A regional government official says the man, whose name was not released, died at a hospital in the town of Xativa late Saturday.

The 1,100-pound (500-kilogram) bull — named “Raton,” or mouse — has killed two other members of the public during festivals over 10 years. Because of Raton’s fearsome reputation, his owners earn euro10,000 (around $14,000) each time he appears at a festival.

Television images on Sunday showed the man being tossed in the air and then hit along the ground in Xativa’s bullring. In Spain, many summer festivals highlight bull runs in streets or bullrings, where revelers can come close to the fearsome beasts..

NPR reports that witness accounts cited by Valencia’s Las Provincias newspaper Sunday said the man appeared to be under the influence of alcohol and had been escorted back to his seat in the stands during the bull run immediately before Raton’s appearance.

The man was said to have then made his way back down to the ring and was charged and tossed powerfully by the large black-and-white bull.

Bullfighting, a popular Spanish sport with the goal of fatally stabbing the bull deep in the shoulder blades at the end of the ‘show’, can trace its origins in Spain back to 711 A.D. When bulls in a bull run, like the event in Valencia’s festival, finally reach the end of the street they go into pens where they are kept until killed later that day in a bullfight.

In May of last year, a matador miraculously survived a half-ton bull goring his throat with the horn exiting his mouth.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.