Real Life

Gorilla mum will not be charged over incident

The mother of the 3-year-old boy who fell into a gorilla enclosure last week will not face criminal charges, a prosecutor has confirmed.
Gorilla Harambe

Gorilla Harambe

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said the child’s mother had three other children under her care, and was looking after them when the boy “scampered off” and fell into the gorilla’s enclosure.

Tragically, Harambe the western lowland gorilla was shot and killed in order to save the child on May 28, an incident that provoked international outrage from the animal rights community.

According to Joe, child services have visited the kid’s home and social workers were impressed by the environment he was living in.

The boy’s family, who have been terrorised since the incident last week, have said they are looking forward to putting the tragic episode behind them.

In a statement on Facebook from last week, mum Michelle defended her actions:

“I want to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers today. What started off as a wonderful day turned into a scary one,” she wrote.

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“For those of you that have seen the news or been on social media that was my son that fell in the gorilla exhibit at the zoo. God protected my child until the authorities were able to get to him. My son is safe and was able to walk away with a concussion and a few scrapes … no broken bones or internal injuries.

“As a society we are quick to judge how a parent could take their eyes off of their child and if anyone knows me I keep a tight watch on my kids.

“Accidents happen but I am thankful that the right people were in the right place today.”

As for Cincinnati Zoo, they plan to reopen Gorilla World on Wednesday with a reinforced barrier. Their role in the incident will be reviewed by the US

Department of Agriculture, which enforces the Animal Welfare Act.

Some animal protection groups are still urging that the zoo face fines.

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