Source: No Charges Against Parents in Harambe Case
'Be calm,' mom urges boy in 911 call
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 2, 2016 4:31 AM CDT
Harambe, a western lowland gorilla, was fatally shot to protect a 3-year-old boy who had entered his exhibit.   (Jeff McCurry/Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden via The Cincinatti Enquirer via AP)
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(Newser) – "Justice for Harambe" is unlikely to involve criminal charges for the parents of the 3-year-old boy who fell into the gorilla exhibit at the Cincinnati Zoo, sources say. A source close to the investigation tells the Cincinnati Enquirer that cops have wrapped up their investigation into the fatal shooting of the gorilla Harambe without recommending charges for the boy's mother, 32-year-old Michelle Gregg. Cincinnati city spokesman Rocky Merz, however, says the investigation is ongoing and Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters will review the case, which has made headlines around the world and sparked furious debate over the decision to shoot the gorilla to protect the boy, the AP reports.

In 911 tapes released by police on Wednesday, Gregg can be heard urging the boy to "be calm," CNN reports. "He's dragging my son! I can't watch this," she told the operator. The family released a statement Wednesday saying the boy "is still doing well" and thanking the zoo "for their actions taken to protect our child," the Enquirer reports. The family says people have offered support and even financial help, but they "recommend a donation to the Cincinnati Zoo in Harambe’s name" instead. When asked about the incident Wednesday, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said he wasn't aware of any official position on "what can only be described as a tragedy." (This columnist thinks eating chicken is "a greater moral wrong" than killing a gorilla.)