Owner surrenders tiger spotted in Houston neighborhood

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May 16 (UPI) -- The owner of a 9-month-old tiger seen loose in a Texas neighborhood last week has surrendered the animal to authorities, the Houston Police Department said Saturday night.

"We are happy to report that the missing tiger seen in a Houston neighborhood last week has been found and appears to be unharmed," the department tweeted.


The tiger, named India, was immediately placed in the city's animal shelter and is expected to be transported to the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch wildlife sanctuary on Sunday, CNN reported.

Gia Cuevas and her husband, Victor Hugo Cuevas, are the owners of the tiger.

Gia Cuevas brought the animal to authorities Saturday and is not facing criminal charges at this time.

But HPD Commander Ron Borza emphasized in a news conference Saturday night that it is illegal, as well as a bad idea, to keep tigers as pets in Houston.

"In no way, shape or form should you have an animal like that in your household," Borza said. "That animal can get to 600 pounds. It still had his claws, and it could do a lot of damage if he decided to."


ABC News said India weighs about 175 pounds.

The tiger's existence was first made known to authorities by people who saw it and warned their neighbors via the Nextdoor app that the enormous cat was on the loose.

Video showed Victor Hugo Cuevas, 26, approaching the animal and taking it into the house from which it apparently escaped.

Victor Hugo Cuevas fled the scene with the tiger as police arrived to investigate.

He remains in custody for alleged felony evading arrest. His bond was also revoked on an unrelated 2017 murder charge.

India was not with Victor Hugo Cueva when he was arrested.

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