Endangered tiger shot dead after attacking cleaner who put arm through cage at Florida zoo

Eko, a Malayan tiger at the Naples Zoo, was killed after he bit a maintenance worker on Dec. 29, 2021.

A tiger was shot and killed at a zoo in Florida after attacking a worker who illegally entered its enclosure.

According to the Collier County Sheriff’s Office, a member of a third-party cleaning service contracted by the Naples Zoo suffered serious injuries after entering an unauthorized area near a tiger that was inside its enclosure.

The worker tried to pet or feed Eko when the tiger grabbed his arm at Naples Zoo, according to police.

Authorities were called to the scene at about 6:30 p.m., and the first deputy to arrive kicked the enclosure in a failed bid to get the tiger to release the worker, the sheriff’s office said.

Afterward, “the deputy was forced to shoot the animal,” the Collier County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.

Eko was an 8-year-old Malayan tiger, who arrived at Naples Zoo in 2019.

The worker, in his 20s, was seriously injured and taken to a nearby hospital.

The zoo says the tiger was killed in the shooting.

The 8-year-old Malayan tiger named Eko came to Naples Zoo in December of 2019.

Authorities said the employee was tasked with cleaning the zoo’s bathrooms and the gift shop, not animal enclosures.

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