The USDA says the Las Vegas Chimps were improperly cared for which, based on the history of their “trainers” comes as no real surprise.
Last month 2 chimpanzees escaped from the enclosure that they were supposedly kept in.
Fortunately no people was hurt but if it weren’t for the quick actions of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department and a local veterinarian called to the scene, things could have turned out very differently.
The 2 chimps, Buddy and Calamity Jane (CJ), broke free and were out on the street.
CJ, the female chimp was subdued with two tranquilizer shots. The male chimp named Buddy, was shot dead by a police officer after he allegedly charged the cop.
More than 10 years ago, the 8NewsNow I-Team did an investigative piece because they received a tip from animal rights activists that the two chimps, then just babies, were being put on display at an indoor swap meet.
Even back then, there were concerns that the 2 Las Vegas Chimps were improperly cared for.
The owner Nikki Riddell, now Nikki Grusenmeyer did admit at that time, that they were wild animals yet she continued to keep them and unfortunately, the current laws on Nevada’s books allowed it.
It is obvious that Nikki thought of Buddy and CJ as her kids. Her facebook profile shows numerous photos of the the chimps inside her house (not in an enclosure), eating at the table, lounging on the couch, etc.
She was not running a sanctuary and did not have the facilities to provide a good life for them as they aged and more importantly, as proven by the escape she and her other “trainers” were unable to safeguard the people in her neighborhood.
She’s been accused on her facebook page of being a rich woman who wanted to amuse herself with the chimps.
While that may be true, she obviously had strong feeling for the chimps but the sad, real truth is that the 2 Las Vegas Chimps were improperly cared for at the hands of their owners and trainers.
Timmi DeRosa, another “trainer” involved certainly seems to enjoy speaking to the media and being in front of the cameras
Here’s a little bit about Timmi. She claims to be a trainer but she’s really known as a poker player. A pretty decent one who earns lots of money playing poker.
Initially, she seemed to agree that it was not a good idea to keep the chimps and mentioned that as Buddy sexually matured he became quite aggressive.
Then she appeared again on television and said that tragically with Buddy now gone that CJ seemed happier.
Now she’s on TV again babbling about how strong CJ’s cage is.
And then DeRosa told Fox 5 news,
There’s no such thing as a foolproof cage when it comes to Chimpanzees. You have to look at it as the same thing as a prison. Their job is to break out. It’s a bad situation
Sure it was bad. Buddy and CJ were in prison now he’s dead.
A prison at the hands of Nikki Grusenmeyer, Timmi DeRosa, the owner of the house, and those women’s husbands.
DeRosa can’t make up her mind – it’s bad, it’s good, the cage is strong – blah, blah, blah.
Whether you are an animal activist or not, is that the way chimps should live? Seems quite cruel.
Sure, the chimps were adorable as” babies” and apparently had free run of the house. “Mommy” Nikki must have sure though it was just so cute watching them play, putting them on display, perhaps profiting from it, and just seemed tickled serving dinner at the dinner table and kissing them.
And then they grew up.
Now they were 170 pounds or so and their adult life consisted likely of being in the cage.
A prison. A prison at the hands of their caretakers.
This is not a little dog in an apartment. We’re talking two nearly 200 pound chimpanzees!
Perhaps, it would be more helpful to take some of the hundreds of thousands of dollars that DeRosa has won playing poker and help move the animals to a sanctuary – something that should have been done 10 years ago!
Ironically, only after a public outcry and the USDA becoming involved, that is now happening for the surviving chimp
In addition to player poker, which in case you do not know, takes a lot of time – Timmie is listed as the founder of the The Courtland Brandenberg Foundation in Beverly Hills which was founded in 2005.
AN ANIMAL FOUNDATION!!!!!! And she allowed this to go on.
Unbelievably the foundations mission statement is,
We can – and must do more for our friends. If we’re going to use chimps to help us, we’ve simply got to return that favor by giving them a happy, decent life.
Does this “do more” include keeping them locked up in a cage when they are no longer small and cuddly.
Fox 5 news reported that the USDA has released their report. There were 10 different areas of concern including lack of proper veterinary care and inadequate housing.
The primary structure was not kept in good repair nor was it structurally sound.
Now the caretakers are trying to portray themselves in positive light saying they are moving CJ to a sanctuary in Bend, Oregon.
Finally! They should have done this 10 years ago!
The chimps missed out on 10+ years of their life being kept in poor conditions.
Unbelievably, probably in a move for some more free publicity, the “caretakers” are planning a block party for CJ on 8-25.
Is Timmi not parting with her poker profits as they are securing local business’ to donate?
Is CJ going to be put on display in her cage in the middle of the block with a parade around her while she languishes in her prison?
Is it no wonder there was extreme aggression of an already aggressive species.
At least she will be free soon. Very soon.
The USDA will now determine if any violations were made and the owners could be fined and have their license revoked.
There’s no question that the Las Vegas Chimps were improperly cared for.
Let’s hope the “owners”, “caretaker” and whatever else they like to call themselves are held accountable.
Hopefully CJ will adjust fine to her new surroundings in an animal sanctuary.