Fla. girl attacked by lemur on the loose

Posted: 01/21/13 at 3:50 pm EST      Last Updated: 01/21/13 at 10:52 pm EST

NORTH MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (WHDH) -- A South Florida girl is being treated after a ring-tailed lemur attacked her.

"I have never, in my 17 years, I have never seen anything like this," said North Miami Beach Sergeant Richard Rand. "This is the first time I've ever been dispatched to a call like this."

Police arrived on scene to find two lemurs trotting along Northeast 173nd Street and 20th Avenue early Monday morning. When an unsuspecting mother and her 2-year-old daughter exited their vehicle, one of the lemurs attacked the little girl. "She has a scratch on her face, she wasn't hospitalized, her parents were on scene," said Rand. "I believe her mother was with her during the incident. Fire Rescue treated her immediately."

The lemurs' owner said he believes thieves were trying to steal his pets, because the lock to the cage had been cut. "Someone was trying to steal two of my lemurs, I guess he couldn't get a hold of them and they got out," said Julio Hincipa.

One hopped on to the trunk of a police cruiser and an officer managed to catch it.

The 2-year-old girl is expected to be fine. "She appeared to be in good spirits," said Rand, "and the parents are going to seek medical attention."

Hincipa said his lemur was just scared by all of the chaos. "They were scared, that's it," he said. "They were running around, everybody was chasing them, a lot of lights."

Authorities said the owner had permits for the animals and both lemurs are now back in the owner's care.

Officials are investigating.

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