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America's Gorilla Was Shot Dead Five Years Ago

Harambe killed after child entered enclosure

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Death Of Harambe

MAY 27--Tomorrow is the fifth anniversary of the shooting death of Harambe, America’s Gorilla.

The 17-year-old animal was felled by a single gunshot fired by a member of the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden’s Dangerous Animal Response Team (DART).

The killing of Harambe came after a three-year-old boy entered the Ohio zoo’s Gorilla World enclosure, where the male lowland gorilla “dragged the small child around by the ankle in the shallow water of the moat,” according to a United States Department of Agriculture inspection report.

After Harambe carried the child up a ladder out of the moat, he dragged the boy “several times on the ground of the gorilla enclosure,” prompting a DART member to conclude that the child was in “imminent, life threatening danger.”

The 450-pound Harambe was then struck “with a single gunshot and the gorilla died instantly.”

The boy was rescued from the enclosure, with zoo officials reporting that “no major injuries were apparent at the time of his recovery.”

According to the federal inspection report, “All standard operating procedures relating to the Dangerous Animal Response Team were properly followed” on May 28, 2016. (2 pages)