Much to the chagrin of online haters and PETA, Bloomington dentist Walter Palmer will not face charges for taking out a popular Zimbabwe lion.
According to media reports, the country’s environment minister told reporters Monday that Palmer had legal authority to carry out the hunt, which ended with him shooting Cecil, a collared, black-maned beast involved in a research project.
“We approached the police and then the prosecutor general, and it turned out that Palmer came to Zimbabwe because all the papers were in order,” Oppah Muchinguri said, according to the BBC.
The comments come as a reversal for Muchinguri, who once upon an international incident called for Palmer’s extradition. While it appears the big-game-hunting DDS will get off free, his guide Theo Bronkhurst is slated to have his trial resume Thursday. Throughout the ordeal, Palmer has maintained his hunt was legit and said his crew was unaware of Cecil’s big-deal status before he shot him with a bow and arrow.
Since the messy July hunt, Palmer has been in the cross hairs of protesters and rogue Yelp reviewers. The owner of River Bluff Dental — where the chairs are super comfy — temporarily shut down his cushy office amid the commotion. Last month River Bluff reopened as a gaggle of protesters and reporters stalked Palmer outside his clinic.
Perhaps the no-charges announcement brings some closure to Palmer’s end of the controversy. While the guy’s life will probably never be the same, at least we have some Halloween costume inspiration.