A zoo in El Salvador is reeling after the devastating murder of one of it’s most famous animals, a hippo named Gustavito. The hippo died four days after it was found bloodied and beaten from an overnight attack.
Gustavito was declared dead on Saturday, February 25, just days after it was allegedly attacked by gang members. Sadly, Gustavito’s injuries weren’t found for over a day after he was attacked on Tuesday night, February 21, because zookeepers said that he refused to leave his pool until Thursday. When Gustavito finally emerged, he was suffering from bruises and puncture wounds, allegedly made by metal bars, knives and rocks, reports NBC News.
The people of El Salvador have been devastated by the shocking assault and death of Gustavito, visiting the since closed zoo and leaving candles and flowers in the hippo’s honor. According to reports, Gustavito was born and raised in Guatemala, but came to the El Salvador zoo about 13 years ago in 2004. Unfortunately the violence and homicide rate in El Salvador is extremely high, which sources relate to gang violence.
For now, it is unclear who could have unleashed this brutal attack on Gustavito. El Salvador’s Justice Minister Mauricio Ramirez Landaverde has confirmed an investigation into the murder has been opened, while zoo director Vladan Henriquez revealed they will be doing an autopsy on the dead animal’s body.
Our thoughts remain with the people of El Salvador during this heartbreaking time. HollywoodLifers — Leave your kind words and condolences for Gustavito in the comments below.