The head of a Plano school district facility that houses exotic animals said Monday he fears for his professional future there after comments he made were reported in a local newspaper.
The Plano Star Courier quoted Jim Dunlap as saying a local pet owner was having sexual relations with a rhesus macaque monkey seized last month by authorities. The head of Plano ISD's Living Materials Center said the pet owner, Bobby Crawford Jr., sent a box of toys for Darwin the monkey to play with he was kept there. In that box was an audiotape.
“After listening to the tape, Dunlap said Crawford made references to Darwin and himself engaging in mutual stimulation,” the story read.
In an interview Monday with The Dallas Morning News, Mr. Dunlap said he’s been going through “holy hell” over the story.
“I’ve been expecting any moment to get a phone call from my supervisor saying, 'You’ve been put on administrative leave,' or from somebody saying, 'I’m suing,'” Mr. Dunlap said.
Mr. Crawford said he did send Darwin a tape, but that he was probably crying when he recorded it and that it contains nothing but comforting baby-talk. He said there was nothing sexually suggestive on the tape, and called Mr. Dunlap's initial conclusion “ridiculous.”
“I don’t have sex with my monkey. That’s absolute crap,” Mr. Crawford said. “Why would I do that? I gave him an audiotape, but it didn’t have anything like that on it. It said, “I’m coming home, I’m coming to get you. Daddy’s coming, he’s coming to get you,’” Mr. Crawford said.
Mr. Dunlap added he made a “gross error” and that his interpretation of the tape was just that -- his and no one else’s.
“I interpreted what I heard and saw in my own way, and I can’t say that’s correct. It’s just me, what I think. I can’t argue with Mr. Crawford about what he meant,” Mr. Dunlap said. “I took it on surface value about what he said. I just don’t want to deal with it anymore. He may be totally honest and right in what he thinks about the way he sounded.”
Mr. Dunlap said has has the tape “under lock and key.” He said he's the only person who’s heard it, and declined to make it available.
Spokeswoman Nancy Long said the Plano school district had no comment.
The monkey was among numerous animals taken from Mr. Crawford on Feb. 21 because of violations of city and state rules on the keeping of animals.
Mr. Crawford vowed at the time to leave Plano, and said Monday that in order to legally keep Darwin he has moved into a barn on a friend’s property in Kaufman County. The monkey was returned to him Friday.