Cheetahs Maul Woman as Husband Takes Pictures
60th birthday almost ended up being her last.
A Scottish woman celebrating her 60th birthday at a South African zoo almost ended up having it be her last.
Violet D'Mello was posing with a pair of cheetahs at the Kragga Kamma Game Park as her husband snapped photos away. The pair of cheetahs were supposedly tame and many zoo visitors took pictures with them.
The cheetahs, Mark and Monty, began to latch onto an 8-year-old girl's leg when Violet tried to get the animals away. When she attempted to remove them from the girl, they turned on her.
“But the next thing I knew I was on the floor and the cheetah was right on top of me,” D’Mello told Britain’s The Daily Mail.
“It started scratching me really badly and then I could feel the other one come up too, and one of them got my neck in its mouth.”
“I was just screaming and trying to get my hands up around my neck to protect myself, but I was being bitten all over my legs and down my side near my kidneys.”
Her husband Archibald said he was so stunned by the attack he didn't realize he continued taking the photos.
One of the horrific snapshots shows a cheetah gnawing on Violet’s neck. In another, blood trickles from the back of her head as both cats lurk near her head.
Violet played dead so the animals could stop.
“Something inside me just said, ‘Don’t move. Don’t move at all. Don’t react, just play dead,” she said.