Horrifying scenes were filmed by visitors to a zoo in St. Elizabeth, Jamaica: in order to impress the audience, a zoo keeper provoked a caged lion in front of several onlookers. Then he made a fatal mistake.

Last Friday, a terrible incident happened at the “Jamaica Zoo” in St. Elizabeth: in front of several visitors, a keeper provoked a lion kept in the zoo and repeatedly put his hand through the bars of the enclosure. Suddenly, however, the angry animal bit and tore off a finger of the man, to the horror of the spectators. Footage of the event was shared on Twitter, where it has been viewed more than 4 million times. The zoo administration has announced an investigation into the case.

Footage shows a keeper putting his hands through the bars of the lion’s cage, apparently to provoke the animal and impress onlookers. However, the lion did not put up with that for long – a short time later the powerful jaws of the predator snapped shut and caught the worker by the hand. While the spectators still thought what was happening was a joke and filmed the scenes with their smartphones out, the guard tried cursing and screaming to free his finger from the lion’s mouth.

Only when the animal keeper fell to the ground and lost his finger did the onlookers jump in shock. “I didn’t realize how serious it was because it’s their job to put on a show,” an eyewitness to the incident told the Jamaica Observer. “When he fell to the ground, everyone realized it was serious was. Everyone panicked.”

Warning, the recordings could be disturbing:

Officials at the Jamaica Zoo described the incident as “tragic” and said they would review video footage posted on Twitter. We want to prevent such incidents from happening again in the future.