September 1, 2014

Elyria
Cloudy
76°F
test

Owner of spider monkey that bit worker previously charged in Fla.

Jacob Ruehlman

Jacob Ruehlman / LEE COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

VERMILION – A man whose pet spider monkey bit a car dealership employee on Tuesday was previously charged in September after he was accused of stealing two monkeys from a home in Nebraska.

Jacob Ruehlman, 20, and his brother Michael, 20, were accused of sneaking into a woman’s house in Nebraska and taking two gibbons in September. They took the monkeys to Florida, where they were found by the Sheriff’s Department in Fort Myers, and the men were charged with dealing stolen property on Sept. 19, according to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.

The monkeys were given to the Talkin’ Monkey Project in Florida where they are currently being cared for, according to their previous owner, Nancy Stephens.

However, on Tuesday Jacob Ruehlman was in Vermilion with his brother – whose name was not released — and another monkey named “Brody.” The monkey allegedly bit an employee at Pat O’Brien Chevrolet on 4545 Liberty Ave. on Tuesday afternoon, sending the employee to Mercy Regional Hospital, according to Vermilion police.

The investigation into the incident is ongoing and Ruehlman has not yet been charged. Police told the 20-year-old that he has to find a facility to quarantine the monkey for three days, according to Vermilion police.

Contact Anna Merriman at 329-7245 or amerriman@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter at @AnnaLMerriman.

  • It has to stop

    Is that a picture of the spider monkey or it’s owner?

    • Megan

      are you trying to be funny here? wheres your picture?

  • charla65

    OH MY GOSH! I held one of them last year in first merit bank. I even got a picture holding it!

  • proccw

    so who is going to see that he does what ” the police” told him to do? why was the monkey not seized? a dog would have been!

  • Deirdre Kewer Herbert

    And this is the type of person why Ohio needed an exotic animal law. I just do not understand the lengths these type of people will go to in order to have these types of pets.

  • monkeemmom

    Jacob acted very irresponsible in taking that monk to the dealership, however not all exotic animal owners are irresponsible. That monk in a worse case situation should be rehomed to a private owner in a legal state. Those of you whom are uninformed should just stay out of it. Seizure would traumatize that baby the same as putting a human child in foster care.

    • banshee70

      Jacob is a monkey thief. Who’s to say this isn’t a stolen monkey, too?

    • Deirdre Kewer Herbert

      Monkeemmom, I am very informed about the law here in Ohio and I am very familiar with a few exotic animal owners who should never have ever owned even a goldfish. There are some owners of these types of animals who got into this for the sake and safety of these animals from careless people who had no idea what they were getting into. Unfortunately these type of people are few. The rest of these owners buy these animals for breeding and making money exhibiting them or for their own selfish reasons. This young man and his brother are reckless in taking this animal out into stores and public places for attention. Whether or not these animals have been breed in captivity they still possess their natural instincts!

  • grp61

    Ohio just Loves it’s criminals, that’s why they release so many of them back onto the streets every day so they can get back to the business of crime ! Why are these two brothers not being held for out of state crimes, I’m sure there are warrants out for them ? Damm monkey thief’s !

  • formerlorainresident

    This simply proves that even monkeys don’t like Chevys. I wonder if he would have bit a salesman at the Ford dealership down the road.

  • Alexis

    Those who do not know the whole story or even them for that matter should not be commenting! No one even knows what happened with the Gibbons and have no right to bash them. Ever heard of innocent until proven guilty? There is a reason as to why they are not in jail right now. I’m sure all of you who are commenting bad things have not been perfect your whole life. How would you like to be exploited and bashed all over the place. Have a heart…God calls us to love one another, not tear one another down. Yes, they had Brodi with them in their car…but the person put his hand through the window WITHOUT asking permission. When you reach for an animal that you do not know..be it a cat, dog, bird or whatever…be prepared for any consequence that comes with it! The monkey is well loved and cared for and taking him from his home would be very tragic for the monkey. He is protective over his owners, but in no way aggressive.

    • Deirdre Kewer Herbert

      Be protective of your friends if you must, but someone on CT facebook page has already commented that they had the monkey in a hair salon. If they truly cared about the animal and it’s well being then they would not be parading it around town out in public putting others at risk. The young men should have thought about the downside of the attention they were receiving putting their own monkey at risk of being taken because they could not follow the law or use common sense!

      • Bill

        Why? Because she makes perfect sense? You hiding behind a name and making personal attacks show who the real a-hole is.

    • Éireann Simpson

      Well ye friends gave him a death sentence by taking him out in public and now Brodie is dead because of their ignorance and primates belong in the wild,get a clue lady,remember wot happened to Travis the chimp?

    • OooShiny

      No one even knows what happened with the Gibbons

      Wrong. Owner reported gibbons stolen. Staff at Florida’s Talkin’ Monkey Project already knew the men from prior contact about monkeys. Staff coordinated with local police and original owner to do everything possible in convincing the men to come out of hiding and surrender the gibbons to the sanctuary. Twenty phone calls later, the men did exactly that, at which time they were charged with possessing stolen property and exotic animals without permit.

      There is a reason why they are not in jail right now.

      Yes, it’s called bail.

      All of you commenting bad things have not been perfect your whole life.

      Not one single person here has claimed to be perfect nor stated the men could or should be perfect. People ARE expecting these two men to NOT scam and rob naïve people of their living exotic animals, cross state lines with said animals while completely unprepared to care for a much larger primate species they’re not familiar with (no doubt alarming the animals themselves at being torn away from their human owner), possibly for the purpose of reselling to no-questions-asked breeders for quick cash.

      Have been familiar with Jacob and his spider monkey Brodi for a few years via his former YouTube channel. He appeared to be a very gentle, caring and knowledgeable owner in the handful of videos publically available.

      However, if even half of what the Nebraska woman reports is actually true, then there is some bizarre and unstable behavior going on with these men that’s simply not discernible through a few brief videos.

  • ekwaykway

    Shock the monkey to life.

  • ZX3

    He should have kept the monkey on his back.

  • Andrea Brown

    My daughter is related to them and has played with Brody a lot. Brody is not a threat to anyone and must’ve been just spooked about something.

  • Mark Brennan

    DEBORAH MISOTTI CLEWISTON, FL

    · about 2 hours ago
    I HOUSED BRODI WHEN HE WAS CONFISCATED WHEN THE IDIOTS STOLE THE GIBBONS FROM NEBRASKA. I WAS BITTEN WHEN I WENT TO PICK HIM UP AND I AM ALIVE AND WELL. NO AFTER EFFECTS…HE IS WELCOME TO RETURN TO OUR SANCTUARY HERE IN FLORIDA. I HAVE NO FEAR OF INFECTION…THE DEATH OF THIS PRIMATE WILL NOT CHANGE THE FACT THAT THESE MEN ARE IDIOTS. TAKE THE PRIMATE FROM THEIR CARE, BUT DO NOT MAKE BRODI PAY FOR THEIR RECKLESS ACTS…THERE IS NO THREAT OF RABIES, THERE IS ONLY THE THREAT OF STUPIDITY BY TWO IDIOTS WHO CLAIM TO LOVE HIM…YET EXPOSE BRODI TO A DANGEROUS SITUATION…WHY MUST BRODI PAY FOR THEIR PERFIDY? THAT’S 6 BITES THAT I KNOW ABOUT BY BRODI.

    I SAY CALL THEM AND TELL THEM WHAT U THINK OF THOSE MONKEY KILLERS
    937-537-0897 OR EMAIL RUEHLMANM@YAHOO.COM

  • Éireann Simpson

    RIP,
    Brodie. We are VERY sorry for this sad outcome and offer sincere
    condolences to his owners. This should serve as a clear message to
    others who choose to put the public at risk by doing senseless things
    with their restricted pets…. don’t do it! Stay home, follow the law,
    and keep your animal(s) safe.

    the law who euthanized this poor animal at midnight last night. There were other ways. It’s over now.