Female keeper, 22, is mauled to death by a lion which escaped a locked enclosure at a North Carolina zoo before the animal was fatally shot
- Alexandra Black, 22, a graduate of Indiana State University, died on Sunday
- She was mauled to death by a lion at Conservators Center in Burlington, North Carolina
- Black, a native of New Palestine, Indiana, was part of a team doing a routine cleaning at the facility
- Investigators are trying to determine how the lion got out of the locked area
- The lion was shot and killed by zoo officials immediately after the attack
Zoo officials in North Carolina said that a lion was shot and killed after it escaped its enclosure and fatally attacked a 22-year-old intern.
The incident took place at the Conservators Center in Burlington, North Carolina on Sunday.
Officials said an animal husbandry team led by a keeper was doing a routine cleaning when one of the lions managed to get out of a locked space, according to WTVD-TV.
The lion then entered the area where the team was cleaning and quickly killed Alexandra Black.
Alexandra Black, 22, a graduate of Indiana University, has been identified as the intern who was mauled to death by a lion
The incident took place at the Conservators Center in Burlington, North Carolina on Sunday
Zoo officials in North Carolina said that a lion was shot and killed after it escaped its enclosure and fatally attacked a worker. The above stock image is a file photo of a lion at the Conservators Center
The animal was then shot and killed so that the attacked worker could be retrieved.
Black is a recent graduate of Indiana State University. She is from New Palestine, Indiana.
Black had been working at the Center for the past two weeks as an intern, according to BuzzFeed News.
Authorities are still investigating. The Conservators Center will remain closed until further notice.
‘The Conservators Center is devastated by the loss of a human life today,’ it said in a statement.
The Center was founded in 1999 in Mebane. It was then relocated to its current location, a 45-acre, wooded lot in Caswell County.
It is home to more than 80 animals and 20 species, among them lions and tigers.
An estimated 16,000 people visit the Center each year. The public is invited to take walking tours.
The Center was created as an educational nonprofit which accepts animals rescued from ‘unacceptable conditions.’