A traumatized woman claims she was “thrown like a rag doll” by a raging hippo before it “tore” her cousin’s intestines on a children’s farm.
Natasha Vrany, from Alberton, South Africa, claims a rabid hippo charged out of the river at Jessica’s Place in Hoedspruit, Limpopo, and pushed her to the ground.
According to the 39-year-old, her cousin Belinda Newman, 62, then had her stomach ripped by the rabid beast – a nine-year-old girl named Richie – as she tried to help him.
“Suddenly Richie ran out of the river. My back was facing the river, but I heard stomping on the ground, ”she told IOL.
“As I got up, Richie pushed me to the floor and started biting both my legs and throwing me like a rag doll.
“He had both legs in his mouth, biting harder every second.”
Natasha claims Richie then carried her to the river as she cried out for help as Tony Joubert – who runs the world-famous park with his wife Shirley – allegedly tried to slap him to get him down.
Belinda, Natasha says, then jumped onto Richie’s back to try and free her cousin.
“He then turned on Belinda, pushing her to the ground, and started ripping her stomach,” Natasha said.
Natasha says she then ran into the house to ask Ms. Joubert to bring a gun, but passed out when she reached the kitchen.
She claims that when she woke up, her cousin was standing over her “holding her intestines in her hand to try and get them to stay inside.”
The couple were then rushed to hospital, with Natasha calling it the “most traumatic experience” of her “entire life.”
Richie is one of two hippos who live on the reserve after being rescued by the Jouberts. The park is also home to the 21-year-old hippo Jessica.
But Mr Joubert denies that the Nov. 12 incident happened at their premises – instead claiming it helped the women as they were attacked by a wild hippo.
He told the point of sale: “I managed to hit him over the top of the eye where there are soft bones, and he dropped it, I saved his life while putting mine in danger. “
Mr Joubert insists his hippos were not involved in the incident.
Richie was rescued by the Jouberts in 2012. He was only a few hours old when he was found by Mr. Joubert after a severe storm.
The park ranger couldn’t find Richie’s mother and so brought him back to the reserve to be with Jessica – whom the couple rescued as a baby in March 2000 after severe flooding took her back. left orphan.
She has since risen to fame, having made a documentary about her on Animal Planet as well as an appearance on I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here! Australia and BBC News.