CINCINNATI, Ohio — An Ohio prosecutor plans to announce next week whether to pursue charges against parents of a little boy who got into the Cincinnati Zoo’s gorilla exhibit, leading to the fatal shooting of an endangered gorilla to protect the child.
Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters’ office said Thursday he is reviewing the Cincinnati police investigation of the family’s actions in last Saturday’s incident.
Deters said he’ll announce a decision on charges Monday.
Legal experts have said that prosecution seems unlikely. The family has declined comment.
The zoo plans to reopen Gorilla World on June 7 with a higher, reinforced barrier.
The boy apparently climbed over the outer barrier before falling some 15 feet into a shallow moat. A special response team shot the 17-year-old western lowland gorilla to protect the boy.
A 2-year-old boy fell into a cheetah exhibit at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo in April 2015. he boy fell between 10 and 12 feet and was removed from the exhibit and taken to the hospital.
His injuries were not caused by the cheetahs.
His mother was charged and was sentenced to probation and counseling.