Jimmy Kimmel emotional about endangered lion murder

Walter James Palmer (left) poses with another dead lion in undated Facebook photoOn his show on Tuesday night, Jimmy Kimmel got emotional when discussing the murder of Cecil, a male research lion who had lived in a protected sanctuary in Africa for the last 10 years.

Cecil wore a GPS tracking collar placed on him by Oxford University, which had been studying the habits of the lion for years. The endangered 13-year-old lion had become a favorite among locals and tourists, as he was a rare breed with a black mane.

American dentist Walter Palmer paid $50,000 to kill a lion in Africa. He and the guides tied a dead animal carcass to their SUV and lured the lion out from the safety of the sanctuary. Once Cecil was outside of the zone, Palmer wounded him with a bow and arrow. Cecil ran and the hunting party tracked the lion for over 40 hours, killing him with a gun when they finally found him.

Palmer and his hunting group wasted no time taking trophy pictures with the dead lion. When they spotted his GPS collar, they were unable to destroy it, so they removed Cecil’s head, skinned him and abandoned the body, which researchers found not long after.

Jimmy talked about the killing on his show, stating that he was ashamed an American had committed this atrocity. Jimmy wrapped up his monologue by encouraging viewers to donate to the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit at Oxford, the researchers who put the collar on Cecil, to aid in the protection and conservation of endangered animals around the world.

Professional hunter Theo Bronkhorst and farm owner Honest Ndlovu, the guides responsible for killing Cecil, have been formally charged with poaching and hunting without a permit. If found guilty, the two men could spend up to 15 years in jail.

Walter Palmer, who is currently in hiding, has a prior felony record in the U.S. in regards to shooting a black bear in Wisconsin, for which he was given one year probation in 2008 and a fine of nearly $3,000. He also had a complaint of sexual harassment against him in 2006, but settled the suit out of court for $127,000. Photos of Palmer posing with a variety of animals he’s killed, including lions, rhinos, leopards, bighorn sheep and elk appear on a number of hunting websites in which grinning hunters pose with dead carcasses.

A petition has been started to get full accountability and punishment for all those involved in Cecil’s death. To sign the petition, click here.

~Greg Chisholm

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Comments & Discussion

  1. Theresa Schickler • July 29, 2015 @ 9:37 PM

    Even if this guy truly did not know it was Cecil he was hunting and killing he is a poor excuse for a human being if he got pleasure ( he sure looks like he did in the picture) from killing. He needs to get some professional help. I hope he looses his practice and no longer has the funds to pleasure himself with brutal acts towards helpless animals. What a sicko.

  2. Janice • July 30, 2015 @ 7:28 AM

    I don’t understand how someone gets their kicks out of killing innocent animals. This guy is twisted. I hope too that he never is able to work again so he can pay thousands of dollars to murder beautiful animals who are minding their own business. Cecil had five cubs, they are all now in danger of losing their lives as well. Sicko.

  3. Jeannieb • July 30, 2015 @ 9:36 AM

    There isn’t one problem facing mankind that could mean the end of our existence of which any animal is responsible for. Yet, animals suffer unbelievable cruelty at our hands which we would not allow administered to the most heinous of criminals. What I don’t agree with is calling these humans “sick”. It excuses them. They are evil–totally void of empathy. It is these humans who we do not need on this planet.

  4. Karen • July 30, 2015 @ 9:56 AM

    Too bad the maximum penalty is 15 years in jail, wish these 2 would be spending the rest of their lives in jail. For Walter Palmer claiming ‘ignorance’ of his illegal actions, 15 years in solitary confinement to start.

  5. J • July 30, 2015 @ 10:57 AM

    He should be killed, skinned and his head cut off. I believe in eye for an eye.

  6. gbh999 • July 30, 2015 @ 10:59 AM

    There a a great many people who have posted their comments, on this story. Not 1/2 of 1% were positive towards the murdering dentist. I noticed that he has not opened for business, since he came running back to the USA. Probably a good idea. Many people have legal guns on their person, in the USA. It wouldn’t surprise me if this sick s.o.b. gets his just rewards.

  7. Patricia • July 30, 2015 @ 2:38 PM

    Brave hunter is he? Dr. Palmer’s actions display cowardice. Luring Cecil outside of the protected sanctuary was deliberate. No accident. Attempting to destroy the tracking collar and then abandoning Cecil’s body is clear evidence of an attempted cover up. Dr. Palmer left Zimbabwe (quickly we can assume) and is now in hiding.

    We are all imperfect. We have all done things that we later regret. Show some courage now Dr. Palmer. Step up. ‘Fess up and MAN UP.

  8. inda • July 30, 2015 @ 3:59 PM

    I hope all Palmer’s patients leave his practice, he deserves to be penniless. These are crimes against humanity and obviously this man has no humanity. He committed an atrocity for which he deserves to be punished as severely as possible. If we don’t all stand up now and condemn these actions, butchers like this man will continue. Hunters like the other two murderers will take there money and not think twice about the blood on their hands. I would love for someone to wipe that sadistic grin off his face. Jimmy Kimmel showed the true feeling of the majority of thinking, intelligent, humane people. Please help all the Cecils out there. An organization called Change.org is also trying to get people to rally for this cause. God Bless all those who care.

  9. Ri • July 30, 2015 @ 5:32 PM

    Please sign & share the petition. It won’t bring Cecil back but it will punish the selfish & heartless person that took his life in committing the most heinous crime. It sickens me that this “person” is trying to put the blame on others. I agree with each of the above comments especially the one by J. Absolutely saddens me that Cecil’s innocent cubs are going to die without protection. Killing for a trophy is abhorrent!!!!A complete waste of life. NEEDS TO STOP!!!!!!!!

  10. Jim Anderson • July 30, 2015 @ 5:33 PM

    It looks like this ass pays off all his transgressions with cash, including his sexual exploits.
    This is a sad commentary on our laws. A fit punishment would be give him a penknife and put him in a lions cage. Then , maybe we will see just how tough he really is.
    Jim Anderson

  11. Holly Hogg • July 30, 2015 @ 5:48 PM

    I will never understand how someone can kill and do it for the thrill. I think the coward who killed Cecil needs to suffer the same as he cause this beautiful magnificent lion to suffer. Such a hienous crime who could imagine that someone could have such a wicked heart to take a life how could this give anyone the thrill this seems to have given the murderer of Cecil. Punishment for this crime should be more then a jail term this should be the last time this murderer ever has a chance to take another life. It makes me sick to see how often crimes like this are in the news why does the punishment not reflect the crime. Animals are not to be used as trophies they need to stop this from happening. The smiles on the faces of the murderers take his smile away put him where he put Cecil same punishment for animal cruelty as for humans this is a very sick man take away what he needs take his practice, take his safety lock him up till the end of time or better still send someone after him cross bow in hand and stop his killing spree. When will understanding of animal rights happen wishing someone finds him and he pays a high price. Makes me hope he is not feeling safe for too much longer

  12. Mack • July 30, 2015 @ 6:31 PM

    His guides should be held accountable – if you are a hunting guide (anywhere in the world) it is your responsibility to abide by the laws, and to know what animals can, and cannot be killed. Just prosecuting THIS guy is stupid….his guides probably take 20-100 people out each year… and they aren’t the only ones. (guides)

  13. Tess • July 30, 2015 @ 8:49 PM

    This man is a rich, bottom-feeding hypocrite beyond measure. He hired two local guides (who damn well knew about Cecil). They lured Cecil at night, so they obviously checked out where he was in the daytime. He probably wanted Cecil because of the rare black mane and was willing to pay extra to get what he wanted.

    Add sadism to the charges as well, since the intrepid dentist didn’t kill Cecil outright, but let him suffer what the local authorities called a slow, agonizing death while he and his buddies tracked Cecil for 40 bloody hours.

    Palmer should be forced to return to Zimbabwe to be tried, fined and/or jailed. Then every nation in Africa needs to put his name on a “No Fly” list. He should also be forced to return the head and skin of Cecil so that beautiful animal can be buried in his homeland. Cecil DOES NOT belong on display at the home of this sick whack job!

    When you add sexual harassment to the dirty laundry list of this man’s twisted nature (which he also paid to keep out of court), then there can be absolutely no doubt that this vile piece of human excrement will ever change his ways. And since this is supposedly a licensed doctor, his obvious lack of moral fibre and web of outright lies should be grounds enough to have him stricken off the AMA as unfit to practice ANYWHERE in the U.S.A.

    Anyone that keeps this grotesque Dr. Death as their dentist needs to check in at their nearest local mental health unit!

  14. Lana • July 30, 2015 @ 8:52 PM

    Sad,sad…how many hungry people in this planet,sick people..$50.000 to hunt,torture and kill this beautiful lion-he payed. Donating money to those in need,hospitals,charities,anything. The way they lurked Cecil out the park,wounded him and hunt for 40 hours. Do they have guards in those parks? Cruel,emotionless human It was not a kill for food or safety,it was for twisted fun and pleasure which many of us can’t imagine. SAD.

  15. Mark N • July 31, 2015 @ 7:46 AM

    In my opinion any person who gets a thrill out of killing/torturing animals must be sick in the head mental retards .
    President Obama must act in this case & see to It that Palmer is extradited back to Zimbabwe to face all charges .
    Palmer along with all who had a hand in this despicable act must be brought to justice .
    Palmer needs to serve 20 or more years in a prison with hard labour attached to his every day duties .

  16. martha • July 31, 2015 @ 12:23 PM

    arrest him and leave him to rot in an african jail

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