Thursday, January 17, 2008
Teasing a 350-pound tiger is not the work of a brilliant mind.
Police: Victim drunk during tiger attack
SAN FRANCISCO - One of the three victims of San Francisco Zoo tiger attack was intoxicated and admitted to yelling and waving at the animal while standing atop the railing of the big cat enclosure, police said in court documents filed Thursday.
Paul Dhaliwal, 19, told the father of Carlos Sousa Jr., 17, who was killed, that the three yelled and waved at the tiger but insisted they never threw anything into its pen to provoke the cat, according to a search warrant affidavit obtained by the San Francisco Chronicle.
"As a result of this investigation, (police believe) that the tiger may have been taunted/agitated by its eventual victims," according to Inspector Valerie Matthews, who prepared the affidavit. Police believe that "this factor contributed to the tiger escaping from its enclosure and attacking its victims," she said.
Sousa's father, Carlos Sousa Sr., said Dhaliwal told him the three stood on a 3-foot-tall metal railing a few feet from the edge of the tiger moat. "When they got down they heard a noise in the bushes, and the tiger was jumping out of the bushes on him (Paul Dhaliwal)," the documents said.
Police found a partial shoe print that matched Paul Dhaliwal's on top of the railing, Matthews said in the documents.
The papers said Paul Dhaliwal told Sousa that no one was dangling his legs over the enclosure. Authorities believe the tiger leaped or climbed out of the enclosure, which had a wall 4 feet shorter than the recommended minimum.
The affidavit also cites multiple reports of a group of young men taunting animals at the zoo, the Chronicle reported.
Mark Geragos, an attorney for the Dhaliwal brothers, did not immediately return a call late Thursday by The Associated Press for comment. He has repeatedly said they did not taunt the tiger.
Calls to Sousa and Michael Cardoza, an attorney for the Sousa family, also weren't returned.
Toxicology results for Dhaliwal showed that his blood alcohol level was 0.16 — twice the legal limit for driving, according to the affidavit. His 24-year-old brother, Kulbir, and Sousa also had alcohol in their blood but within the legal limit, Matthews wrote.
All three also had marijuana in their systems, Matthews said. Kulbir Dhaliwal told police that the three had smoked pot and each had "a couple shots of vodka" before leaving San Jose for the zoo on Christmas Day, the affidavit said.
Police found a small amount of marijuana in Kulbir Dhaliwal's 2002 BMW, which the victims rode to the zoo, as well as a partially filled bottle of vodka, according to court documents.
Investigators also recovered messages and images from the cell phones, but apparently nothing incriminating in connection with the tiger attack, the Chronicle reported.
Zoo spokesman Sam Singer said he had not seen the documents but believed the victims did taunt the animal, even though they claim they hadn't.
"Those brothers painted a completely different picture to the public and the press," Singer said. "Now it's starting to come out that what they said is not true."
Posted by Ryan at 11:25 PM
Sunday, January 13, 2008
You may have noticed that I haven't written much at all lately. It's not because I have nothing to say. I do. In fact I've been so busy lately, with so much on my mind, that I haven't found the time to really keep anyone updated. So here's what's currently going on:
- I am now in love and engaged. Back in September, I flew to Indonesia and spent my vacation with Dian. Her and I had an amazing time with each other! While sitting on Kuta Beach one night in Bali, I asked her to marry me. Since then, I've hired a lawyer to take care of our legalities and get Dian over here as soon as possible so we can finally be together. The paperwork is essentially ready to submit now, and I hope to sign the official papers by the end of January. Once the papers are signed it will most likely take another five to six months for us to get the visa approval. As you can imagine, it has been anything less than easy to be stuck 8,500 miles away from the one you love, especially when there's not a damn thing you can do about it. But we're communicating as much as possible in the meantime... getting through one day at a time; reminding each other how much we want this (and each other) and how it will all be much better in time.
- After Thanksgiving Day weekend, I decided to stop getting drunk. No more hard alcohol for me. And since I've never been a fan of beer, I am essentially limiting myself to a couple of Mike's Hard Lemonades here and there. There were many reasons I came to this decision... Health. Money. Responsibility. I didn't like who I was becoming when I was drinking so much. I was blacking out for hours at a time. I didn't feel like myself anymore. I suppose that's exactly why most people enjoy drinking, but I didn't like that feeling at all. Above all of that, I've promised myself that I will take care of Dian the best I can. And I've come to the seemingly obvious conclusion that the only way to take care of someone is to take care of myself first.
- I had a nice Christmas. I spent it with my parents as usual. I watched The Wizard Of Oz in its entirety for the very first time. Yes, the first time. We did our usual tradition. Among some of the great gifts people got me this year was a little mp3 player. It has somewhat revolutionized the way I listen to music at work now, and I use it all the time.
- Speaking of work, it has been going fairly smoothly recently. I've been getting slammed with more and more work, but I'm not complaining. That's why they call it work. I've been working a lot of overtime lately too. All the extra money is going towards the lawyer fees that are currently only halfway paid off. Every extra dollar helps...
- ... Which is why I've also been getting serious about cleaning up my place, sorting and organizing; weeding out things I no longer need or use. I plan to spend some time on Ebay this week, selling many things to get a few extra bucks while simultaneously freeing up more space in my room. I'll also be donating many things to Goodwill. I'm excited about this project...
- I've been finding myself more and more involved with benevolent causes as well. I've started up, and am moderating yet another myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/imagine237. It's not much yet, but it will be an ongiong effort. As soon as life begins to calm down a bit for me, I'll dedicate more time to developing it.
In the meantime, I will try to get back to writing more often like I used to. I have much material stewing in my head, and it's only a matter of time before it spills out bit by bit...
Posted by Ryan at 2:15 PM