DALLAS (TCD) — A 24-year-old man was arrested and charged after allegedly stealing two emperor tamarin monkeys from the Dallas Zoo earlier this week.
The Dallas Zoo first notified the Dallas Police Department on Monday, Jan. 30, after noticing the monkeys were missing and their “habitat had been intentionally compromised.”
The next day, Jan. 31, the Dallas Zoo announced that the monkeys, Bella and Finn, had been found. According to the Dallas Police Department, Bella and Finn were located in a closet within an abandoned home in Lancaster.
After they were found, the monkeys underwent evaluation by the zoo’s veterinarians, and the Dallas Zoo said they had lost a bit of weight but had no signs of injury.
The Dallas Zoo was able to provide surveillance camera footage to the police and offered a reward up to $25,000 for information leading up to any arrests.
Upon further investigation, the Dallas Police Department posted a photo of a possible suspect, asking for the public’s help in identifying him.
Police said they located the suspect, Davion Irvin, on Feb. 2, not far from the Dallas World Aquarium in the 1400 block of Pacific. He was subsequently taken into custody and interviewed.
Irvin was arrested and booked into the Dallas County Jail on six counts of animal cruelty, records show. He remains held on $25,000 bond. Further charges are possible.
Before the monkey kidnapping, zoo employees said Irvin kept asking questions about the clouded leopard that went missing several weeks prior, WFAA-TV reports. The clouded leopard was reportedly found near its enclosure, which had been tampered with.
Additionally, a vulture from the Dallas Zoo reportedly suffered a possible stab wound, and some fish had been kidnapped around the same time. Police told WFAA they are investigating whether Irvin was involved.