TortsProf Blog

Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Widener Commonwealth Law School

Friday, January 18, 2008

More Torts at the Zoo

CNN is reporting a series of allegations about the victims of the Christmas Day tiger attack at the San Francisco Zoo.  If true, the allegations undermine a potential physical injury suit against the zoo, and seriously undermine a threatened defamation suit.  According to CNN, one of the surviving victims told the father of the deceased victim that all three victims yelled and waved at the tiger.  One of the victims allegedly yelled and waved from on top of a railing of the big cat enclosure.  However, the victims deny they threw anything into the tiger's pen.  CNN also reports an allegation that toxicology results indicate all three victims had both alcohol and marijuana in their systems at the time of the incident.  The story is here.


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The Zoo, with the complicity of the police and other city employees has been engaged in an ongoing smear campaign against the victims, including leaking confidential medical information.

There is nothing that links this mysterious footprint to any of the victims and, even if all of this is true, isn't it foreseeable that a wild tiger might be tempted by something it sees outside of its enclosure and isn't that why the Zoo should have taken precautions.

Tigers have a high prey drive and I imagine they would be very tempted to attack and eat young children they see walking around.

I don't know what happened at the Zoo that night (nobody but those involved do) and it seems odd to read stories that imply that people going to the zoo should know that if they do something wrong that the tiger might jump out of its enclosure and kill them.

What about children who make faces at gorillas?

Posted by: tde | Jan 18, 2008 3:27:56 PM

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