New evidence continues to point to disurptive youths causing their own attack.
Small bits of evidence in the tiger mauling incident at San Francisco Zoo continue to become public. And so far they are confirming my suspicions as outlined in yesterday's blog post. Associated Press says the San Francisco Chronicle reported that "police found a shoe and blood in an area between the gate and the edge of the animal's 25- to 30-foot-wide moat, raising the possibility that one of the victims dangled a leg or other body part over the edge of the moat."
In addition the actions of the young men involved is looking more and more antagonistic. Reports now say that they refused to even identify their dead friend and wouldn't tell police or doctors who they were.
There are also reports that sticks and pine cones were found in the enclosure and that they could not get there naturally -- that they appeared to have been thrown in.
The father of the dead youth says he intends to sue the city regardless of any role his son may have had in his own attack: "I don't think this deserves to happen to anybody -- taunting or not taunting." To me that sounds like him saying that he doesn't think there should be consequences regardless of how his son acts. My personal view is that ideas like that in families are a rot and directly lead to children who believe precisely this and thus act badly creating the very problems involved.
The zoo director said "somebody created a situation that really agitated her [the tiger] and gave her some sort of a method to break out." He also said that a "a couple of feet dangling over the edge could possible have done it."
Add that to the police report that a shoe print was found on the railing of the wall of the enclosure. This all is looking more and more suspicious.
According to the reports the dead man distracted the tiger when it was attacking one of the brothers. Supposely that helped save the life of the brother. Yet the two brothers and their family are refusing to even speak to the family of the dead man who supposedly helped save them. Why? What are they trying to hide?
I thought the preponderance of evidence released as of yesterday pointed to the youths actively doing something that caused the attack. I would have placed the percentage that this was the case around 55% to 60%. Based on the continuing behavior of the survivors and their family and based on the alleged fact that a shoe was found inside the tiger enclosure I would now move that percentage up well into the 90% range. If it is confirmed that the shoe in the enclosure belongs to one of these youths then I would say the case is closed. The shoe would not have been there any other way. The tiger didn't carry it there since it never returned to the enclosure after the attack because it was killed.
To me it is looking very much as if these young men, with a history of trouble making, were taunting, attacking and harassing the tiger. The animal involved did what any animal would do, which is to defend itself. And I don't fault the tiger for that. It acted as it ought to be expected to act. And it appears that the young men were responsible for their own attack. If this turns out to be the case and I suspect it will I hope that no compensation is received for the attack and that the two surivivors are charged for their reckless and immature behavior which contributed to the death of their friend. They are supposed to be intelligent humans beings who know better. The tiger is not. For me that says the bulk of the responsibility for this attack rests on the young men and not on the tiger or the zoo.