6:22 AM PST, November 13, 2021
A woman wearing a blonde wig and carrying a bouquet of roses climbed into the lion enclosure at the famed Bronx Zoo in New York City Thursday and started throwing money at the big cat.
“I missed him so much. I missed him so much,” the woman was recorded saying as she professed her love for the animal.
The incident happened at 4 p.m. Thursday. A spokesperson for the Bronx Zoo said that witnesses alerted staff about the unidentified woman in the blonde wig, but she was gone by the time they got there, NBC reported.
She apparently climbed over a low fence and got into the exhibit, however, there was a deep trench that stopped her from getting too close to the lions. Lucky for her, that trench may have saved her life.
Zoo officials said they plan to press criminal trespass charges, NBC New York reported.
“The woman did not enter the exhibit and was never in the same space as the lions which are separated from zoo visitors by a wide moat,” the Bronx Zoo said in a statement to New York Post. “The incident lasted only a couple of minutes and the woman was gone when staff arrived on scene. The zoo intends to prosecute the woman for criminal trespass if she is identified.”
The woman in question is believed to be Myah Autrey was charged with criminal trespassing and banned from the zoo in 2019 for similar antics, according to New York Daily News.
Cops were searching for Autry Friday, New York Daily News reported.
“This situation involves one individual who is determined to harass our lions with no regard for her safety, or the safety of our staff and our guests, and no regard for the well-being of the lions,” Bronx Zoo spokesperson Max Pulsinelli said in a statement to the Daily News. “The Bronx Zoo has a zero tolerance policy in matters such as this and will aggressively seek prosecution against this individual and anyone who violates park safety rules.”