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A deputy at a Florida zoo was reportedly forced to shoot a tiger after it attacked a maintenance worker who was not authorized to be near the enclosure, according to reports.
The Malayan tiger, Eko, died after being shot by a deputy after it reportedly pulled a cleaning worker by the arm at the Naples Zoo and refused to let go on Wednesday, according to NBC2.
“The Collier County Sheriff’s Office confirmed a man with a third-party cleaning service contracted by the zoo was attacked after petting or feeding the tiger. Both of these aren’t authorized by the zoo, according to deputies,” NBC2 reported.
“Preliminary information given to CCSO officials suggests the 8-year-old tiger grabbed the man’s arm and pulled it into the enclosure after the man put his arm through a fence barrier of the enclosure,” the outlet added.
The worker, reportedly a man in his twenties, was airlifted to Lee Memorial Hospital after sustaining serious injuries. The animal was a “critically endangered” tiger, one of less than 200 Malayan tigers left in the world, according to NBC2.
A Collier County deputy reportedly tried to kick in the enclosure in an effort to free the worker but, after failing to get the tiger to release him, was forced to shoot the endangered animal which died from the wound.
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