at­tack Fa­tal lion


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A 22-YEAR-OLD IN­TERN WAS AT­TACKED AND killed by an es­caped lion at a wildlife park. The ter­ri­fy­ing in­ci­dent oc­curred at the Con­ser­va­tors Cen­ter in Burling­ton, North Carolina, on Dec. 30. Ac­cord­ing to a state­ment from the Con­ser­va­tors Cen­ter, ob­tained by WHO, Alexan­dra Black was work­ing with one of the hus­bandry teams clean­ing a lion en­clo­sure.

“A lion who had been locked into a sep­a­rate hold­ing en­clo­sure some­how man­aged to en­ter the en­clo­sure in which our team was work­ing and killed Alex,” the state­ment said. No other hu­mans were in­jured in the at­tack. “When our hus­bandry teams clean big cat en­clo­sures they fol­low a safety pro­to­col that in­volves mov­ing the cats into a sep­a­rate space and se­cur­ing them be­fore hu­mans en­ter the ad­ja­cent space. The specifics of what hap­pened are still un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion,” the state­ment said.

The lion, a 14-year-old male named Matthai, was later killed by the Caswell County Sher­iff’s De­part­ment in or­der for Black’s body to be safely re­trieved. In a state­ment, Black’s fam­ily said Alex “loved an­i­mals”. “She was a beau­ti­ful young woman who had just started her ca­reer, there was a ter­ri­ble ac­ci­dent, and we are mourn­ing. But she died fol­low­ing her pas­sion.”

It’s not the first fa­tal lion at­tack at a wildlife park. In 2015, a li­on­ess mauled to death Game of Thrones ed­i­tor Kather­ine Chap­pell through an open car win­dow af­ter Chap­pell stopped to take a pho­to­graph in a South African sa­fari park. •

Zoo in­tern Alexan­dra Black loved an­i­mals.Black had been at the zoo for just 10 days.

The Con­ser­va­tors Cen­ter in North Carolina.

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