BOSTON (TCD) -- A 24-year-old man was arrested this week after reportedly breaking into Franklin Park Zoo and trying to access the tiger enclosure.
According to WCVB-TV, on Monday, Feb. 21, at approximately 9 a.m., Matthew Abraham was detained by the zoo’s security after he was spotted in a non-public area near the "Tiger Tales" exhibit. He reportedly saw staff approaching and climbed over the gate, leaving the area.
Abraham was determined to be mentally competent after being evaluated by Boston Emergency Medical Services, WCVB reports. He reportedly refused medical treatment.
Massachusetts State Police told WFXT-TV, "Abraham scaled multiple fences in his attempt to get to the tigers, ignoring multiple posted signs advising the public to stay out that area. When questioned by a trooper as to his motive, Abraham responded only that he was very interested in tigers."
Abraham was reportedly charged with trespassing and disorderly conduct before being released on $40 bail. According to WCVB, he is scheduled to appear in court at a later date.
The zoo told WCVB that no animals or people were injured.
In an interview, Abraham told WCVB, "I was there as a spectator of the zoo. I didn’t mean to harm anybody. I wasn’t looking to harm the tiger. I wasn’t looking to harm myself neither. My plan was just to go see what is a tiger. How would a tiger react to a human being?"
According to WFXT, the "Tiger Tales" exhibit opened in 2006.