The Texas woman who jumped into monkey habitat over the weekend and reportedly fed Hot Cheetos to the monkeys named Libby, has been identified and fired. This follows a complaint filed by the Zoo management.
Lovett Law Firm in El Paso Texas, told ABC-7 that the woman, identified as Lucy Rae, had been a litigation assistant in the Firm’s personal injury division.
According to the report, a spokesperson from the Law Firm said Rae was fired on Monday, stating that the Law Firm didn’t condone her actions or have any advanced knowledge of her intentions.
“Stupid and lucky” were the words the director of the El Paso Zoo, Joe Montisano, used to describe the woman who trespassed into the zoo’s spider monkey enclosure on Sunday.
“These are primates we’re talking about, they could do some substantial damage to you,” Mason Kleist, a zookeeper at facility said. “They may be small monkey’s but they can take you to the ground if they wanted to.”
He said the woman didn’t just put herself in harms way, she also endangered Libby and Sunday, the two spider monkeys, by feeding them.
The monkeys have a specialized diet so her feeding them could cause stomach problems and bowel disruptions. Zookeepers also told ABC-7 that the woman put the monkeys at risk of catching Covid-19.
“Anything that we have they could get as well so Covid is no different,” Kleist said. “We took the necessary steps to prevent them from getting that, so for someone to just go in there and give them food from their hands could just ruin that.”
Monkeying around and invading their home also puts a strain on the zookeepers and monkeys’ relationship.
“It takes years to build trust with these animals and for someone to come in there for five minutes for a video on Instagram or whatever just ruins years of work,” Kleist said. “It’s going to take a long time to get them back to where they were and training.”
The zoo director told ABC-7 that criminal charges could be brought against the woman.
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