Officer felt threatened in chimp attack

STAMFORD, Conn., Feb. 26 (UPI) -- A police officer who killed a rampaging chimpanzee in Stamford, Conn., a year ago says he shot the animal because he feared he would become its next victim.

Speaking to reporters Thursday, Stamford Police Officer Frank Chiafari recounted his take on the February 2009 incident that left Charla Nash, 56, with serious injuries to her hands and face from the chimp's attack, The Hartford (Conn.) Courant reported Friday.


Chiafari said when he arrived at the scene, the 200-pound chimp began attacking his police car and even entered the vehicle after opening up the driver's side door.

"The thing touched me. It came in my car, and I felt him brush against me," Chiafari said. "With a snarl, he was saying, 'You're next.' Thankfully, I got the gun out of the holster and shot."

The officer fired four shots at the enraged animal, fatally wounding it. It died on the property of its owner Sandra Herold, 71.

The Courant said Chiafari previously would not offer specific details of the incident.

The officer, who spoke out to urge changes to state's workers' compensation laws, maintains he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and depression as a result of the chimp's attack.


Latest Headlines