TOP SECRET ANIMAL ATTACK FILES
Special Report Forwarded by AAF Correspondents: James Morris
from the NY Times
in Wolf Bite Case
November 25, 1999
HOUSTON (AP) -- The family of a boy whose fingers were bitten off by a wolf have reached an out-of-court settlement with the city zoo where the animal was on display.
A lawyer for the family said Wednesday that the city of Houston has agreed to pay the family about $50,000 for the boy's injury. The settlement ends several years of legal wrangling.
Manuel Morua was 3 years old when a wolf bit off half his middle finger and parts of two others in March 1996. The boy had put his hand near a fence surrounding the Houston Zoological Gardens' Mexican wolf exhibit.
The family's attorney, Howard Singleton, says the zoo has made changes in the exhibit as a result of the lawsuit.
A trial judge initially dismissed the city as a defendant in the case, citing a statute that limits injury liabilities at recreational facilities. But a court of appeals reversed the decision.
Singleton said doctors have done an excellent job of minimizing the scars, but the injury is clearly noticeable. The half of finger that was bit off was not recovered.