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Police charge Florida woman for selling monkey that attacked a teenager: report

Source: Putnam County Sheriff’s Office; Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Feb. 23 2022, Published 4:13 p.m. ET

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A woman faces charges after she sold a monkey to a teenager, then the animal attacked the girl, according to a report.

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Joan Newberger, 75, sold the monkey for $9,500 on Nov. 22 to the teen and her mom, according to an affidavit from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and reported by News Channel 8.

The victim’s mother reportedly was worried about whether the sale was legal, after finding the monkey available on an online ad, according to the report.

Newberger showed the victim two monkeys for sale and the mom and teen chose to buy a capuchin, News Channel 8 reported.

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When the victims asked for the permit, Newberger said she did not have them, according to the report. The two left with the monkey and later returned with the animal to ask for a refund.

Newberger agreed to give them back $9,000, investigators said.

When the teen went to pet the monkey and say goodbye, it bit her finger, investigators noted. That led to an infection and hospitalization.

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The girl’s mom reported the incident to police, who went to Newberger’s property and she showed them two monkeys, according to News Channel 8.

Newberger denied that anyone visited to buy the monkey or had been bitten, the report stated.

Newberger had licenses in the past, but they had expired, News Channel 8 noted.

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This month, officers charged Newberger with four counts of illegal possession of conservation animals and one count of possession of captive wildlife for commercial or sanctuary purposes without a permit.

Source: Putnam County Sheriff’s Office; Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

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