Workers killed a gorilla after a four-year-old boy fell into the enclosed area containing several of the animals in the Cincinnati Zoo and the gorilla dragged him around for about ten minutes. Zoo President Thane Maynard said the boy crawled through a wooden and wire barrier and fell an estimated 10 to 12 feet into the moat surrounding the habitat. The boy was not seriously injured by the fall and was taken to a local hospital. The animal named Harambe weighed 400 pounds and was 17-years-old. His species is on the extremely endangered animal list.
Two female gorillas were also in the enclosure. The decision to kill the gorilla, as opposed to tranquilizing it, was made after authorities feared the child was about to be injured. Officials said they were concerned that a tranquilizing projectile might startle the critter, and he could reactively harm the boy. It was unclear why they didn’t try to subdue the gorilla while simultaneously having rifles aimed at it. Animal rights groups have called for criminal charges to be filed against the parents of the boy. Others have said that zoos across the nation need to consider changing the rules, including age limits.