EL PASO, Texas
(AP) — The El Paso Zoo
plans to charge a woman who was caught on video attempting to feed spider monkeys after climbing into their enclosure.
According to the El Paso Times, the exhibit is surrounded by a low fence that allows visitors to see the monkeys and has a moat as an added barrier because spider monkeys cannot swim and are afraid of water.
“Unfortunately, this may change all of that because of this one unfortunate lady’s actions,” Zoo director Joe Montisano
The trespass was discovered by zoo staff after they saw a social media
video of the woman attempting to feed two monkeys beneath a waterfall over the weekend. The zoo did not name the woman or specify the charges she faces.
“These are primates. They are strong; they have canine teeth. They can scratch. We don’t interact with them on a daily basis, and we don’t interact with them without a barrier between us,” Montisano said.
Lovett Law Firm's Rob Lovett
stated on Monday that the woman was a former employee who was fired immediately.
“The firm has always been a strong supporter of animals
and advocacy, and we absolutely do not condone this irresponsible and reckless behavior. We support the El Paso Zoo, and our thoughts are with the spider monkeys, Libby and Sunday, and we hope they recover from this traumatic experience,” Lovett said.
Montisano stated that they will discuss filing charges with the District Attorney
“This young lady decided to hop a fence, climb through some bushes, drop into a four-foot deep moat, walk across the moat, and then try to feed the spider monkeys,” Montisano explained.
“We cannot allow this behavior to go unpunished,” he declared.