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article imageOp-Ed: Family of chimp attack victim seeks $50 million in damages

By John Auriada     Mar 17, 2009 in Health
The family of the chimpanzee attack victim in Connecticut is seeking $50 million in compensatory damages. The victim lost her hands, eyes, nose and some part of the jaw.
On February of 2009, a female (Charla Nash) from Connecticut has been mauled by a chimpanzee named, Travis. The chimp is known from appearing on various television commercials such as Coca-Cola and Old Navy. The 200-pound pet mauled Nash for almost 12 minutes, the incident almost cost her life, unfortunately the attack had left her lifetime sufferings; she lost her hands, eyes, nose and part of her upper jaw area.
Chimpanzees are much stronger than humans are; 5-7 times as strong in overall strength. Their bones are denser, and their skin is tougher than ours. The density of their bones is one reason why chimpanzees stay away from water; they are not buoyant and they sink.
If you think Travis the chimpanzee is just like an ordinary chimp you could see everyday from your local zoo, then you are very wrong.
Via Wikipedia:
Travis was toilet trained, able to open doors using keys, could dress himself, watered plants, was able to feed hay to his owner's horses, ate at a table with the rest of the family, drank wine from a stemmed glass, logged onto the computer to look at pictures, used the Internet, watched television using a remote control, and brushed his teeth using a Water Pik.
The attacked happened when Sandra Herold (Travis's owner) asked Charla Nash to come to her house in Stamford on the day of the attack to help lure Travis back into her house. According to the owner's speculation, the pet chimp attacked Nash because she had changed her hairstyle, she was also driving a different car during that day, and Nash tried to get Travis attention by showing him a stuffed toy just right in front of the chimp's face. It was not the first time Travis attacked a human, there are other reports confirming that the chimp bit two other people. After the incident, Travis was shot and killed by police.
Via Yahoo:
Two other people have said that Travis bit them, in 1996 and 1998. A former animal control officer has said that she warned Herold after a 2003 escape that the pet's behavior was worrisome and she needed to keep it under control.
By state law, Nash's lawsuit seeks only an amount greater than $15,000. But Nash's attorneys are also seeking an account of Herold's assets — including six pieces of property she owns and her stake in a Stamford used car dealership — in hopes of securing $50 million for possible damages, according to court papers. Attorneys say it's unknown if Herold has that much in assets.
Do you think $50 million is simply too high for compensatory damages? Or, is it still not enough?
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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