Cellphone video shows diaper-wearing monkey run amok at Florida Home Depot

Customer says monkey escaped from truck in parking lot

By Peter Burke - Local10.com Managing Editor

OKEECHOBEE COUNTY, Fla. - Cellphone video shows a diaper-wearing monkey running loose inside a Florida Home Depot after attacking an employee who tried to find the pet's owner.

According to an Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office report, Tina Ballard left her pet spider monkey in her truck while she went inside the store. She said the monkey was on a leash but managed to get out of the truck and attacked one of the employees outside the store.

The victim, Marilyn Howard, said she was in the break area outside when she heard a co-worker yelling about a monkey and "thought it was a joke." 

"She suddenly saw the monkey walking down the parking lot towards her and noticed it had a leash," the report said.

Howard said she grabbed the leash, but the monkey climbed on her back and bit her twice.

"She was so sweet, to start with," Howard said.

Eventually, Howard walked the monkey to the front of the store to see if she could find the owner. When the automatic doors opened, "the monkey got scared and bit her on the arm and hand." The monkey also scratched her on the left side of her face.

Cellphone video from a witness shows the monkey getting startled, jump up on Howard and then run off inside the store.

Howard refused medical treatment.

Ballard was able to get her pet monkey under control. She said she didn't know how the monkey got out of her truck.

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