Friday, August 05, 2005

Elgin Monkey Hunt Continues

Police in Elgin continue their hunt for an elusive monkey reported to be roaming in wooded areas in the far west suburbs.

A 4-foot-tall monkey or chimpanzee has been sighted more than once in recent days, NBC5's Lisa Tutman reported Thursday.

Tatiana Williams, 15, was still a bit unnerved Thursday morning by what she saw at around 11 p.m. Sunday near her home.

"It was a monkey," she told Tutman. "(It was) brown, or like tan. It was a monkey sitting on the slide."

Williams said the monkey did not appear to see her and just sat quiet and stil on the playground equipment. The teenager, on the other hand, moved quickly, running from the scene to tell her mother what she had seen.

"I thought she was playing, because me and a couple of my friends were sitting out here, and she was like, 'Mom, I just seen a monkey,'" Jennifer Williams said. "She said it was a monkey and I was like, 'Are you sure?'"

Police say that they've received several similar reports since Sunday, including one Thursday morning three miles from the playground where Williams spotted the primate.

There have been at least six police searches through wooded areas in Elgin since Sunday, Tutman said.

"Last night, our animal control officers and a couple of other officers were actually out in nightvision gear walking through the woods to see if they could find this animal, mostly because the information we had received indicated that the animal was mostly seen late night, late hours," said Lt. Cecil Smith, with the Elgin Police Department.

"So, they were out in the woods late last night until 2 o'clock this morning," he added.

Tutman pressed Smith.

"Have you given any thought to the possibility that this may just be a really short, hairy guy?" she asked.

"Well," he replied, "anything's possible, but we're going on the premise that it's a chimpanzee or a monkey."

Story here.

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