Zookeeper Love Triangle Gets Incredibly Messy
Monkey, meerkat handlers clashed over llama-keeper
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 15, 2015 3:29 AM CDT
Meerkat expert Caroline Westlake leaves Westminster Magistrates' Court in London Wednesday after being sentenced to 80 hours of community service for attacking a love rival.   (John Stillwell/PA via AP)

(Newser) – It's the same old story: Boy meets girl, boy meets another girl, meerkat-keeper gets fired from London Zoo for attacking monkey handler. The love triangle at the zoo centered on llama-keeper Adam Davies, who started dating meerkat expert Caroline Westlake after his five-year relationship with monkey-keeper Kate Sanders ended, the Guardian reports. Matters came to a head at the zoo's Christmas party last year, where Westlake hit Sanders in the face with a wine glass after overhearing Sanders make comments about her looks, reports the Telegraph, which labels the affair a "menagerie a trois."

Sanders needed five stitches after the attack and Westlake lost her job. She was convicted of assault last month and on Wednesday, she was sentenced to 80 hours of community service and ordered to pay Sanders $1,200 compensation, reports the Telegraph. Westlake, whose lawyer argued that Sanders struck the first blow and that an employment tribunal ruled that his client's firing was unfair, plans to appeal. Sanders wasn't charged, but the zoo gave her a warning and she has been banned from Zoological Society of London events for two years, the Guardian notes. (And you thought astronauts had weird love triangles.)