Tags: Groundhod | died | dropped | Bill de Blasio | Chuck | Staten Island

NY Mayor Caught in Zoo Cover-up Amid Reports That Groundhog He Dropped Died

By    |   Thursday, 25 Sep 2014 12:46 PM

Bill de Blasio, who presides over Big Apple governance, finds himself at the middle of an animal scandal after a groundhog he hoisted and dropped last February likely died of internal injuries, the New York Post reported.

The paper alleges a possible cover-up of the circumstances surrounding the rodent's death at the Staten Island Zoo where "Chuck" — dubbed in official groundhog proceedings as Charles G. Hogg — had lived.

Chuck, who was likely actually "Charlotte," a female groundhog, was unintentionally dropped by the mayor as part of a Groundhog Day celebration, falling about six feet from his hizzoner's arms as onlookers watched.

Sadly, she was found dead in her zoo pen seven days after her fall, and a necropsy determined her internal injuries consistent with being dropped.

The death, however, was allegedly covered up by zoo staff, and the mayor was not advised of the animal's demise, the Post noted.

"We were unaware that Staten Island Chuck had passed but are sorry to hear of the loss," zoo spokesman Phil Walzak told the Post.

The zoo receives a crucial portion of its funding from the city, about a half of its $3.5 million budget, and zoo supporters also said they were never told the real story.

"I was told he died of old age, that he went to that big farm in the sky," Democrat Assemblyman Matthew Titone, who represents Staten Island told the Post.

Adding to the mystery, the Staten Island Advance noted that Chuck, the original groundhog day star, was replaced with a female stand-in amid fears the male might bite the mayor.

Such a holiday fiasco occurred in 2009 when the furry critter attempted to take a chunk out of then-mayor Michael Bloomberg, who had teased him with a piece of corn-on-the-cob, bloomberg.com reported.

The bite did draw blood, prompting Bloomberg to joke that he was a "terrorist rodent that might very well have been trained by al-Qaida in Afghanistan."


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Bill de Blasio, who presides over Big Apple governance, finds himself at the middle of an animal scandal after a groundhog he hoisted and dropped last February likely died of internal injuries, the New York Post reported.
Groundhod, died, dropped, Bill de Blasio, Chuck, Staten Island
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2014-46-25
Thursday, 25 Sep 2014 12:46 PM
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