HOUSTON (AP) – Authorities on Monday had been looking for a Texas man whose tiger was discovered wandering round a residential space in Houston and who was out on bond on a homicide cost.
Video of the Sunday evening encounter exhibits the tiger coming face-to-face with an armed off-duty Waller County sheriff’s deputy, police stated. Through the encounter, the deputy might be heard yelling at Victor Cuevas, who police imagine is the tiger’s proprietor, to get the animal again inside.
No pictures had been fired.
When officers arrived, Cuevas put the animal in a white Jeep Cherokee and drove off, Houston police Cmdr. Ron Borza stated throughout a information convention Monday. Cuevas acquired away after a quick pursuit, he stated. Police on Monday afternoon charged Cuevas with evading arrest, a felony.
“My fundamental concern proper now’s specializing in discovering him and discovering the tiger as a result of what I don’t need him to do is hurt that tiger. We now have loads of locations we will take that tiger and maintain it protected and provides it a house for the remainder of its life,” Borza stated.
Cuevas’ legal professional, Michael W. Elliott, stated as soon as he verifies that police have filed a cost within the case, he’ll prepare for his shopper to show himself in.
However Elliott stated he did not assume Cuevas was the proprietor of the tiger or that he was taking good care of the animal. The legal professional additionally stated it was unclear to him if Cuevas was the individual seen on movies of the incident.
“Individuals are making loads of assumptions on this explicit case. Perhaps he is perhaps the hero on the market who caught the tiger that was within the neighborhood,” Elliott stated.
Cuevas was charged with homicide in a 2017 deadly taking pictures of a person outdoors a restaurant in neighboring Fort Bend County and was out on bond. Elliott stated Cuevas has maintained the taking pictures was self-defense and is harmless of the homicide cost.
Cuevas additionally apparently had two monkeys within the house, Borza stated.
Having a monkey isn’t unlawful in Houston if the animal is underneath 30 kilos (13.5 kilograms). Tigers aren’t allowed inside Houston metropolis limits until the handler, corresponding to a zoo, is licensed to have unique animals. Texas has no statewide legislation forbidding non-public possession of tigers and different unique animals.
In 2019, some individuals who went into an deserted Houston house to smoke marijuana discovered a caged tiger. The tiger’s proprietor was later ordered to pay for the animal’s care at an East Texas wildlife refuge.
“Non-public residents and emergency responders mustn’t have to return nose to nose with a lion or a tiger in a disaster,” stated Wayne Pacelle, president of Animal Wellness Motion, a Washington, D.C.-based animal rights group. “These animals belong within the wild or in respected sanctuaries or zoos and nowhere else.”
Borza stated residents mustn’t have such animals as a result of they are often unpredictable.
“If that tiger was to get out and begin performing some harm yesterday, I’m positive one in every of these residents would have shot the tiger. We now have loads of neighbors out right here with weapons and we don’t wish to see that. It’s not the animal’s fault. It’s the breeder’s fault. It’s unacceptable,” he stated.