Lawmaker: Taxpayers Will Pay Chimp Attack Victim

The vicious chimp attack in Stamford that left a woman disfigured could cost the tax payers a lot of cash, a state senator said. The state could be paying the victim, Charla Nash, and it’s because of a memo from a state biologist.

The recently revealed memo from a state Department of Environmental Protection biologist warning about the chimp could prove the state was negligent, said State Sen. Andrew McDonald, co-chairman of the legislative committee that handles legal claims against the state.

DEP officials knew about Travis, the 200-pound primate that went nuts and mauled the friend of his owner, but they did not try to remove him from a private home.

The two-page memo was written on Oct. 28, 2008 by an unnamed biologist at the Department of Environmental Protection. The memo was discovered recently during an internal review.

Senior staff at the agency's Bureau of Natural Resources received and reviewed it but determined there was no specific mention of violent incidents involving the chimp named Travis.

Nash, 55, lost her hands, nose, lips and eyelids in the attack. Her family has already sued the chimp's owner, Sandra Herold, for $50 million in damages to help pay for her medical care.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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