Police on Friday announced they arrested a suspect in connection with the case involving two emperor tamarin monkeys stolen fromthe Dallas Zoo.
Davion Irvin, 24, was booked into the Dallas County jail Thursday night, jail records show. The monkeys were taken from the zoo this week – the latest in a series of bizarre events that have included the escape and death of other animals this month.
Irvin faces six charges of animal cruelty in connection to the monkey case, the Dallas Police Department said in a news release.
On Friday, jail records show his bail was set at $25,000. It was not immediately known if Irvin has an attorney.
According to police, the preliminary investigation and help from the public identified Irvin as the man police were looking to speak with regarding the missing monkeys at the Dallas Zoo.
Earlier this week police released a photo of a man with whom detectives wanted to speak and had asked the public to help identify them.
A tip from the public
On Thursday, police said they received a tip Irvin was seen at the Dallas World Aquarium near animal exhibits.
When officers responded they saw Irvin get onto a DART rail. Officers later spotted Irvin nearby and took him to police headquarters for questioning.
The two emperor tamarin monkeys, Bella and Finn, were unaccounted for in their habitat Monday morning, according to zoo officials, who said it was immediately clear the habitat had been “intentionally compromised.” Police said the habitat was cut.
Police found the monkeys unharmed in an empty home outside city limits on Tuesday.
A series of bizarre events
The series of strange events at the zoo began on Jan. 13, when the zoo was shut down after Nova, a 4-year-old clouded leopard, vanished. She was found on zoo grounds and safely secured. Harrison Edell, executive vice president of animal care and conservation at the Dallas Zoo, noted there was a tear in the mesh of Nova’s enclosure that morning.
The next day, on Jan. 14, Dallas police opened a criminal investigation and found that an intentional cut was made in the enclosures that house langur monkeys. No monkeys were missing or harmed. Detectives also determined the mesh in the leopard’s enclosure had been purposely cut.
And on Jan. 21, Pin, a 35-year-old endangered adult lappet-faced vulture, was found dead in its habitat. The zoo said a veterinary team found “an unusual wound and injuries, which pointed to this not being a natural death.”
Police on Friday said the investigation into all cases at the zoo are ongoing and further charges are possible.
Senior Corporal Brian E. Martinez, a public information officer with Dallas police, would not say whether Irvin was also a suspect or person of interest in the other zoo incidents.
Natalie Neysa Alund covers trending news for USA TODAY. Reach her at email@example.com and follow her on Twitter @nataliealund.
Story Credit: usatoday.com