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Woman's Ill-Advised Halloween Stunt: Petting a Tiger

She might lose parts of her fingers as a result
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 2, 2015 7:50 AM CST
Woman's Ill-Advised Halloween Stunt: Petting a Tiger
This Sept. 17, 2015, photo shows one of four new Amur tigers at the Potawatomi Zoo in South Bend, Ind.   (Robert Franklin/South Bend Tribune via AP)

Halloween really did involve horror for an Omaha., Neb., woman who reportedly slipped into a zoo and stuck her hand in a tiger cage. Police say Jacqueline Eide, 33, jumped a fence into Henry Doorly Zoo as early as 4am on Sunday and headed for Mai, an 18-year-old Malayan tiger. When she tried to pet the animal through a cage, Eide was bitten on her left hand, authorities say. A friend took her to Creighton University Medical Center, where police were called regarding a disturbance around 7:20am, per the Omaha World-Herald. "Eide was aggressive toward staff and showed signs of intoxication of alcohol and/or drugs," police say, per CNN. She's now recovering but may lose parts of her fingers, reports KETV.

Eide, who has a lengthy criminal record, was cited for criminal trespass. She's previously been convicted of drunk driving, disturbing the peace, obstruction of justice, and shoplifting, per KETV. A rep for the zoo says "emergency phone numbers are printed on maps for guests to call in case of an emergency and security staff keep watch on grounds around the clock." It isn't clear how Eide managed to evade security cameras, but the zoo says "more cameras will be installed to monitor the grounds and gates." Visitors haven't had qualms about the zoo or its tigers since Eide's encounter, though. "If you stick your fingers in a cat's cage, you're going to get what you deserve," says one guest. "It's not a smart decision." (More tiger stories.)

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