News and Commentary

Tiger In Houston Neighborhood Was Apparently Owned By A Murder Suspect, Who Has Since Been Caught

The Tiger’s whereabouts are still unknown
A Siberian tiger is seen at the world's largest Siberian tiger breeding and breeding base in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, China, May 1, 2021.
Costfoto/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

A tiger walking around the suburbs wearing a collar was already a strange story. The fact that the tiger belonged to a man suspected of murdering someone adds a whole new level.

As The Daily Wire previously reported, police were called to a Houston neighborhood for reports of a tiger walking around in someone’s front yard. An off-duty sheriff’s deputy pointed a gun at the tiger in an attempt to protect residents until police arrived. Eventually a man exited the home and placed the tiger in a vehicle and fled the scene when police arrived.

The man who took the tiger, 26-year-old Victor Hugo Cuevas, was out on bond for a murder charge when the large cat was spotted in his yard, CNN reported. Cuevas fled with the tiger in a vehicle when police arrived. Houston Police Commander Ron Borza said during a news conference on Monday that a “brief pursuit” followed, but “the man got away with the tiger.”

In addition to the murder charge, Cuevas now has been charged with felony evading arrest, CNN reported, adding that authorities said they would try to revoke his bond over the incident. It is unclear how authorities apprehended Cuevas. The tiger has not been found.

Borza told the outlet that owning a tiger in Houston is illegal, a Class C misdemeanor. KHOU 11 reported on Monday that “while tigers are not allowed in the City of Houston, they are legal in the surrounding unincorporated Harris County if their owners register the animals and follow a strict set of rules, including holding $100,000 in animal insurance and keeping the tiger secured at least 1000 feet from another home, school, or child care facility.”

The ordeal began Sunday night around 8 p.m., when police received a call from someone saying they could see a tiger in the front yard of a home.

“This is about a tiger. I’m on the phone with the caller, who is a sheriff’s department sergeant, and he’s holding the owner, and the owner is trying to leave,” Houston police dispatchers told police, according to audio obtained by KHOU 11.

The outlet noted that an off-duty sheriff’s deputy pointed a gun at the tiger — but no people — in order to keep neighbors safe. Witnesses told KHOU-11 that the tiger was eventually put in a vehicle and taken away before police arrived.

Neighbors shot several videos of the incident and uploaded them to social media. In one video, the off-duty officer can be heard yelling at the tiger’s owner: “Get the f–k back inside. F–k you and your f–king tiger.”

The man who claimed to own the tiger replied: “I’ll get him, I’ll get him.”

In another video, the New York Post reported, a woman films the incident while sheltered in her home.

“There is a freaking Bengal tiger roaming in this yard and this dude needs to be careful,” the woman said. “What the heck? Why is there a tiger?”

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