A woman has lost her job after climbing into a monkey exhibit at a Texas zoo in a video that is being widely circulated on social media.
The woman jumped into the zoo's spider monkey enclosure at the El Paso Zoo on Sunday to feed the monkeys, named Libby and Sunday, Hot Cheetos.
Video footage of the incident shows the woman, identified as Lucy Rae, sitting on a rock under a waterfall, appearing to feed the primates the spicy snack.Watch the video below:
'Irresponsible and Reckless'
After the footage went viral on social media, the woman's law firm released a statement saying that she had been fired. "We learned this morning that the individual who was filmed trespassing in the spider monkey enclosure of the El Paso Zoo was an employee of Lovett Law Firm," the company said Monday. "She has been terminated."
The firm, which did not name the woman, called her behavior "irresponsible and reckless." "We support the El Paso Zoo and our thoughts go out to the spider monkeys, Libby and Sunday, and hope that they will recover from this very traumatic experience," the statement continued.
Rae was a litigation assistant for the Lovett Law Firm's personal injury division.
El Paso Zoo to Press Charges Against Rae
Rae's firing won't be the end of her troubles. El Paso Zoo authorities are now investigating the incident and are considering pressing criminal charges against the woman
Zoo officials told the El Paso Times that they cannot let the woman's dangerous stunt go unpunished and they plan on pressing charges against her. "We just talked to police and we are going to proceed with pressing charges. And they will talk to the District Attorney," the zoo's director, Joe Montisano, said. "We can't let this behavior go unpunished."
"This young lady decided to hop a fence, climb through some bushes, drop down into a four-feet deep moat, walk across the moat and then try to feed the spider monkeys," he continued. "It was stupid."
He said the woman is lucky the situation ended the way it did. "These are primates. They are strong; they have canine teeth. They can scratch. We don't interact with them on the daily," Montisano told the newspaper. "And we don't interact with them without a barrier in between us."
Montisano said that because of the woman's actions, the zoo might have to get a higher fence built around the spider monkey enclosure, which will make it harder for guests to see them.