Man mauled by leopard after paying for “full-contact” experience

Foolhardy Floridian suffers horrific injuries after arranging close encounter with big cat at private animal sanctuary.


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black leopard

Sometimes you’re better off not getting what you pay for.

A Florida man was mauled by a black leopard at a private animal sanctuary after paying the owner for a “full-contact experience” with the rare cat.

Dwight Turner, 50, had to undergo multiple surgeries following the savage attack on August 31 in an enclosure behind the home of Michael Poggi in the town of Davie, WPLG reported.

Poggi had charged Turner $150 for what he described as a “full-contact experience”, allowing the visitor to “play with” his black leopard, “rub its belly and take pictures,” investigators from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FFWCC) said.

However, the fully-grown animal charged at Turner as soon as he entered the enclosure. The ferocious encounter left Turner with one ear “torn in half” and his scalp “hanging from his head”, according to the FFWCC report.

A photo of Turner obtained by WPLG shows the back of his heavily bandaged head.

the back of Dwight Turner's heavily bandaged head
Dwight Turner

Poggi is licensed to have the leopard, but was charged with allowing full contact with an extremely dangerous animal and cited for maintaining captive wildlife in an unsafe condition.

He allegedly admitted that what he did was illegal, authorities said.

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