A 23-year-old zookeeper died of a heart attack Monday after he was attacked by a tiger while petting the animal inside a Mexican zoo.
José de Jesús stood next to the chain-link fence enclosure and called over the Bengal tiger for feeding time. De Jesús extended his right hand through the gate to pet the tiger who initially appeared to accept the gesture. Then, all of a sudden, the tiger sunk its teeth into his hand. The man started screaming in agony as the tiger used its claws and clenched jaw to pull him closer.
After he was taken to the hospital, De Jesús refused to allow medics to amputate his mangled hand. Over time, his condition worsened until he died of a heart attack.
Footage of the aftermath was released by the owner of the Bengal tiger, which was being kept in their private zoo. These graphic images were allegedly made available to the public to prove negligence on de Jesús’ behalf. However, the owner claimed to cover his medical bills.
While the owner alleges he had all the necessary permits that would allow him to have a Bengal tiger, as well as a lion and crocodile, at his private zoo, an investigation has been launched into whether he received permission to own the animals from the Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources.
Watch footage of the gruesome event below.
?? | ¡IMÁGENES SENSIBLES! Un tigre de bengala atacó a su cuidador mientras este lo acariciaba en un zoológico de #Michoacán #México. El video es del sábado 11 de junio. Autoridades locales informaron que el joven murió hoy 15 de junio debido a la gravedad de sus heridas. pic.twitter.com/HhqvdQIA9H
— Impacto Mundo (@ImpactoMundo_) June 15, 2022