A new report from the USDA cites several problems at an outdoor facility where two chimps escaped last month. It reveals new details about what could have led to chimpanzees Buddy and CJ's escape in a Las Vegas neighborhood.
An inspector found 10 different areas of concern days after the escape including lack of proper veterinarian care and inadequate housing for the chimps.
"They got cited for a quite a number of things that got our attention here," said David Sacks. "We expect them to correct this situation."
The most glaring item was that an inspector found the chimps primary enclosure was not structurally sound or kept in good repair. On Thursday, the chimps caretaker Timmi DeRosa said she recognizes those problems and most of them have been corrected. She also admits there's so much they can do.
"There's no such thing as a foolproof cage when it comes to chimpanzees," said DeRosa. "You have to look at it as the same thing as a prison. Their job is to break out. It's a bad situation."
That's why the caretakers are now moving CJ to a sanctuary in Bend, OR, at the end of this month. Some neighbors who didn't want to talk on camera say this new report proves their safety may be in jeopardy.
"Anybody can look at the cage," said DeRosa. "The cage is really safe. The cage is completely safe."
Another neighbor Sheryl Bignone said she feels safe and is happy CJ will be in a better place soon.
"Maybe they should have been taken to a preserve earlier but it didn't happen," said Bignone. "This is the way they went. People learn by mistakes. I know everyone had good intentions with the chimps."
The caretakers are planning a public farewell block party for CJ on Aug. 25. So far, the neighborhood is divided about the party but some local businesses have already offered to provide donations for it.
The USDA will now determine whether any violations were made. If so, the owners could be fined and their license revoked.
Copyright 2012 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
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