TIME animals

Officials Release Mom’s 911 Call After Son Fell Into Gorilla Enclosure

“He’s dragging my son. I can’t watch this"

Authorities on Wednesday released the frantic 911 call placed by the mother of a 3-year-old boy who fell into a gorilla enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo over the weekend.

Michelle Gregg told a police dispatcher a male gorilla was “standing over” her son and began to panic as the animal took hold of the child, according to audio of the phone call recently released by Cincinnati Police.

“My son fell in the zoo exhibit at the gorilla—at the Cincinnati zoo. My son fell in with the gorilla. There is a male gorilla standing over him,” she can be heard saying. “He’s dragging my son. I can’t watch this. I can’t watch.”

The gorilla, a 17-year-old male western lowland gorilla named Harambe, was shot dead to save the boy who officials said crawled through a barrier and fell into the animal’s exhibit.

The mother can also be heard screaming down to the boy to “be calm.” The dispatcher, in the audio, reassures the mother that help is on the way.

The gorilla’s death has sparked national outrage, prompting authorities to consider possible criminal charges as the zoo mulls over changes to its gorilla exhibit.

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