Audio: The horrifying yet obligatory "chimp goes berserk" 911 call

The call’s just part of it. The rest is an affecting interview with the chimp’s owner, who admits on camera to having put Xanax in his tea — a detail she suddenly retracted this afternoon, coincidentally as word started to leak out that the D.A. was pondering criminal charges.

In humans, Xanax can lead to aggression in people who are unstable to begin with, said Dr. Emil Coccaro, chief of psychiatry at the University of Chicago Medical Center.

“Xanax could have made him worse,” if human studies are any indication, Coccaro said.

Follow the link for details of what happened to the poor, poor woman who was attacked. Evidently, when Herold says “he ripped her face off,” she wasn’t exaggerating. Needless to say, she was unbelievably reckless in keeping a vicious animal as a pet, and she’ll pay dearly in a tort suit even if criminal charges aren’t filed. But if you’re a pet owner, it’s hard not to sympathize a little when she describes having to stab the chimp she raised for 14 years to get him to stop. That’s some kind of emotional transition to make in the span of a few minutes.