A Bengal tiger that was seen wandering in a neighborhood in Houston in Texas last week was finally found, the local police said on Saturday. The tiger named India was unharmed, cops said. Last week, Last week, residents of the neighbourhood were in for a surprise after they spotted the big cat on the loose. Several videos of the incident were uploaded on social media as netizens criticized keeping animals like tigers as pets.
A day later, Houston police tweeted that they have captured the owner of the tiger however, the whereabouts of the animal were unknown. The owner, a 26-year-old man named Victor Hugo Cuevas, was charged with felony evading arrest for fleeing from HPD patrol officers on Monday.
In a press conference, Houston Police Commander Ron Borza said that Victor was out on bond for a murder charge in Fort Bend County when the tiger was spotted by the neighbouring residents. Cuevas had previously been out on bond for a separate murder charge from 2017.
The Houston Police department Commander Ron Borza on Saturday said they had identified Georgie “Gia" Cuevas as Hugo’s wife and India’s owner and that a friend of hers had tipped the cops off about the big cat’s location. Borza said Gia Cuevas then surrendered the animal to the police. The officials also tweeted a video with the animal after it was rescued.
The HPD officials believed the tiger was in the custody of several people all last week after it was spotted in the Houston locality, Hugo’s wife Gia knew of the animal’s whereabouts.
Hugo’s lawyer, Michael Elliott, has claimed several times that the animal was not a pet of his client and that he merely cared for him in the past months.
Earlier, the founder and CEO of Big Cat Rescue and star of the Netflix series Tiger King, Carole Baskin had also offered a reward of USD 5,000 for the recovery of the tiger.
Keeping a tiger as a pet is illegal in Texas. Police also reported that they found monkeys from Victor’s house, however that is not illegal.