A giant rabbit dying mid-flight isn’t the largest of United Airline‘s PR and/or legal problems at the moment, but it’s a giant pain in the backside none-the-less.
And it might be about to get worse: the owners of Simon the three-foot Continental Giant, who died sometime between leaving London’s Heathrow Airport and arriving in Chicago, are seeking damages of an estimated $2,300 (AU $3,100) for his cost and transport, as well as compensation of lost future earnings. (They were hoping to enter Simon in the Iowa State Fair.)
But here’s the kicker: attorneys allege that Simon might have been accidentally placed in a freezer by airline employees, leading to his death.
Trial attorney Guy Cook announced at a press conference in Des Moines, Iowa on Monday that Simon’s owners are demanding an independent investigation into his death, citing news reports based on anonymous sources that Simon may have been inadvertently locked in a freezer.
Cook is also accusing United of “destroying evidence” in the case, as it cremated Simon without the owner’s permission, making an autopsy impossible.
“It’s circumstantial proof that there was something wrong here that they cremated the remains of Simon without the consent of the ownership group or the breeder who provided the rabbit to the owners,” he said. “United Airlines has essentially done nothing to demonstrate objectively what actually happened here. They’ve had scant interaction with the ownership group.”
FWIW, United has maintained that the freezer stories are “completely false”. F-also-WIW, here’s the absolute best sentence in any single report about this entire tragic incident.
“Simon, a three foot long and black-furred bunny was expected to outgrow his enormous father to become the largest rabbit in the world.”
And so he was. h/t Daily Mail for that one, RIP to Simon the big bunny.
Source: Des Moines Register.
Photo: Sean Gallup / Getty.