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Wife: Victim tried to reason with chimps during attack

March 7th, 2005, 04:43 PM
SAN FRANCISCO, California (AP) -- A man who was severely mauled by two chimpanzees at an animal sanctuary last week was quickly overwhelmed when the apes attacked, his wife said Monday.

"One was at his head, one was at his foot. But all that time ... he was trying to reason with them," a sobbing LaDonna Davis told ABC's "Good Morning America." "I couldn't do anything."

Davis, 64, and her husband, St. James Davis, were visiting Animal Haven Ranch near Bakersfield on Thursday when two male chimps escaped their enclosure and attacked the couple.

"When we made eye contact, the charge was on," LaDonna Davis said. "There was no stopping anything, and the big chimp came around from behind me and pushed me into my husband. The male came around from behind and chomped off my thumb. ... My husband must have realized we were in deep trouble because he pushed me backward. At that time, they both went for him."

St. James Davis, 62, lost all the fingers from both hands, an eye, part of his nose, cheek, lips and part of his buttocks in the ferocious attack, his wife said on NBC's "Today Show." She also said one of his feet was mutilated. A Kern County Sheriff's commander also said his genitals were mauled.

St. James Davis was being treated at Loma Linda University Medical Center, where doctors said his condition was "minute by minute," his wife said Monday.

"Right now what they are trying to do is keep his breathing constant," she said. "That's all they can tell me, but I told him that he can't leave me. He has to be strong."

The Davises were visiting the sanctuary to celebrate the birthday of Moe -- a 39-year-old chimpanzee who was taken from their home in West Covina, a Los Angeles suburb, after biting off part of a woman's finger in 1999.

Authorities were continuing to investigate how the two chimps, named Ollie and Buddy, got loose. Both were shot and killed during the attack.


Copyright 2005 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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March 7th, 2005, 04:44 PM
WOW Is all i can bring myself to say,that is un friggin believable..............

March 8th, 2005, 12:38 PM
There was a show on last nite "the dark side of chimps" Belive it or not, this is normal adult male chimp behavior(sort of), they normally hunt monkies in the wild, since there are no monkies in captivity, if they are in hunting mode and get a shot a person, they will take it. They will even form a hunting party in the wild and go looking for a male chimp from another group to attack and kill. It's very upsetting to watch, but this has been there way of life for thousands of years, the more people intrude in on there inviroment, the more likey a person is to fall victim to a chimp attack. This is why adult male chimps in captivity are caged at all times with no direct human contact, but unfortunatelty these two found a way out, very sad for all involved.

March 8th, 2005, 12:39 PM
I cannot even imagine what he must look like now,i have NEVER heard of someone being soo torn up and survive somehting like that,i think i would of probably not wanted to live through that.

March 8th, 2005, 12:46 PM
Nor would I, chimp attacks are very horrible.

March 8th, 2005, 01:42 PM
That is just crazy! People always look at chimps as sweet lil smart babies, but I suppose even the ones in captivity always go back to their natural ways eventualy. Any more news on the guy? Really sad.., for the people and the chimps who had to die just for being "normal" as they would be in the wild. :sad:

March 8th, 2005, 02:10 PM
I ahve not heard anything else,cant get much worse,hopefully his face can be reconstructed,i am not sure about genitals,if the whole thing is gone or what...