Hundreds of curiosity-seekers, horse-traders and others have attended an auction of the estate of a suicidal man who released dozens of exotic animals in eastern Ohio almost two years ago.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Columbus Zoo experts say out of the over 56 animals that were released into the community of Zanesville, six of them are left alive. They are being cared for at the Columbus Zoo.
Zoo officials say three leopards, two monkeys, and a grizzly bear are in good condition and will get complete medical exams Thursday.
The only animal in question as of late Wednesday night was another monkey, who experts say, had Hepatitis B. Officials say they believe the monkey was likely eaten by one of the cats that escaped. That cat was eventually killed.
49 animals were killed in the hunt to keep residents safe.
While many are not sure if killing the animals was the right thing to do, others said that if the animals weren't killed, they would have viciously attacked people in the community. These animals, according to officials, were very aggressive.
Animal rights activists and some experts say Ohio Gov. John Kasich needs to come up with a solid, more strict law about buying, selling and housing exotic animals.
Police say the 62-year-old farm owner Terry Thompson let all of his 56 animals out of their cages Tuesday before he killed himself. Sheriff's deputies then shot 48 animals -- including 18 rare Bengal tigers and 17 lions -- after Thompson threw their cages open Tuesday and then committed suicide.
It wasn't long before the community started seeing the animals roaming around and called for help.
Police immediately forced residents to stay inside their homes and cancelled school on Wednesday to keep children home, as well.
By Wednesday night, officials said they had captured or killed but one animal. That's when they determined the monkey that was missing was most likely eaten by another wild animal.
This investigation into why Thompson let the animals out and killed himself is still developing. The conditions of the animals at the Columbus Zoo is still being determined. A news release on their medical conditions is expected to be released later today.
For all of the up to the minute information on this developing story, you can count on NewsChannel5 and newsnet5.com.
Attorneys for Ohio told a federal appeals court Wednesday that the state's exotic animal law gives owners a pathway to keep the creatures if they choose and doesn't violate their constitutional rights.
Owners of exotic animals in Ohio would be required to meet new caging, safety and caretaking standards under proposed rules slated for review Wednesday by a legislative panel.
The types of animals being held at Ohio's new holding facility for exotic creatures won't be released to the public, mainly to deter anyone from trying to gain access to them, state Agriculture Director David Daniels said Thursday.