The Cincinnati Zoo shot and killed a western lowland gorilla on Saturday after a 4-year-old boy slipped into the animal’s enclosure, a zoo official said at a news conference.
Harambe, a 17-year-old, 400-pound gorilla, carried the boy around its habitat for about 10 minutes in what the zoo’s dangerous animal response team considered a life-threatening situation, Cincinnati Zoo Director Thane Maynard said at a press briefing.
After the gorilla was shot with a rifle, the child was taken to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, CNN affiliate WKRC reported.
Maynard said it appeared the boy went under the rail, through wires and over the moat wall.
It seems like he was protecting the child before it was shot.
Two female gorillas were called out of the habitat, Thane said, but the male gorilla went to the moat, picked up the child and began dragging him around the enclosure.
Latest update: apparently a second gorrilla just passed too today. SAD!