Disturbing incident filmed at an Uzbek zoo shows the animal and the staff rushing to the toddler.
In a blood-curdling incident captured on camera at a zoo in Uzbekistan’s capital city Tashkent on Friday, a young woman threw her three-year-old daughter into the enclosure of a massive brown bear.
CCTV footage from the scene showed the woman lifting the child into the air, putting her onto the fence of the enclosure and then pushing her into its five-meter-deep moat.
Zuzu the bear was visibly startled by the sudden invasion, rushing to check on the child as soon as she plunged into the moat. The animal approached the girl, sniffed her, and then walked away.
The predator was then promptly led away by the zoo’s staff, who hurried to extract the girl from the enclosure. While the infant was not harmed by the bear, she was hospitalized with injuries she suffered from her fall.
Uzbekistan’s prosecutors have launched a criminal probe into the incident, with the woman suspected of an attempted murder of a helpless person. If found guilty, she may face up to 15 years behind bars.
The woman, identified only as Z.T., had been known to the authorities, the country’s family ministry revealed Sunday. The 30-year-old had been receiving support over her crumbling marriage and suffered from depression, the ministry added. The woman’s husband is said to have been away, working in Russia.