A WILD elephant trampled to a monk after charging at him while he was walking back to his temple.
Horror footage shows Jaron Suksing, 66, looking around only to see the crazed male elephant charging at him.
The monk desperately tries to get away but only gets a few yards before being caught, CCTV footage taken in the temple compound in Thailand shows.
The monk is gored him by the elephant’s 20in long ivory tusks then trampled as he lay on the ground screaming for help during Saturday evening’s attack.
The 10-year-old elephant had left by the time colleagues found the monk’s bloodied body at 9 am the next morning.
“Nobody had seen Monk Jaron during the morning ritual,” said temple caretaker Wasan Meesapan.
“The next we saw of him was when his body was found. He was already dead.”
Staff were initially unsure how the monk had been killed as his body was covered in cuts and bruises.
But when they checked the CCTV footage and confirmed an elephant was responsible.
During the investigation, the elephant was found to live in a nearby national park.
A team of wildlife rangers was deployed in the area to monitor the animal to keep it away from villages and prevent similar incidents.
They believe the elephant was in musth, a period in which they show highly aggressive behaviour and have surging hormones as they try to attract a mate.
Police from the Kaeng Hang Maeo Police Station attended the scene and confirmed they were not looking for anybody else in connection with the death.
In their report they said: “The body of the monk was found shortly before 9am on Sunday September 11.
“He was last seen on surveillance footage the evening before, when the elephant attacked him.
“The monk was dead when police and ambulance staff arrived. There was no chance to save him.
“Wildlife staff from the national park are now tracking the elephant, which is estimated to be 10 years old.”
Thailand has an estimated 2,000 Asian elephants living in the wild but they wander freely among protect forests.
There is, however, often conflict when they come into contact with humans on roads and in villages.
A similar number of elephants work in the tourist industry or get hired out for religious festivals and weddings while a small number work in commercial logging.
While seemingly gentle, when elephants do attack, they can leave a trail of destruction.
In 2018, horrifying footage showed an elephant killing his trainer before goring several worshippers at an Indian festival.
The same year, a German tourist was trampled to death by an elephant in Zimbabwe as she tried to take photos of it.
In another attack, a man was disemboweled and trampled to death by an elephant in Makueni, Kenya.