A woman who is wanted by police for trespassing after climbing into the lion enclosure at the Bronx Zoo told reporters in a bizarre interview that she wasn't afraid to approach the wild animal.
“I fear nobody. No animal, no human, no one. So no, I wasn’t fearing of the lion because the lion loved me. That’s why he came to me and I let the lion know: Lion, I love you,” Myah Autry told press after a court appearance on Thursday for a shoplifting charge in Kearny, New Jersey.
When Autry left the courthouse she greeted the reporters with a bow, according to NBC New York. “Shalom," she said.
In a 15-minute interview, Autry said her decision to climb a fence and head into the lion's den was a "spiritual" experience.
“I am the lion now. Can’t you tell? Have you ever heard of reincarnation? Do your history young man!” she instructed a reporter. Then she complimented his eyes and smile.
“Do your history, it’s called reincarnation. I am the lion now," she repeated.
Autry was caught on video in late September standing in front of the lion in the African lion exhibit. Videos show she broke into a dance and waved at the creature, which stood nearly motionless, staring at her.
The Bronx Zoo confirmed the woman had breached a barrier and said there was a concrete trench between Autry and the lion.
Autry is wanted on a trespassing charge by the New York City Police Department, which said she also entered a fenced giraffe enclosure on the same day.
Autry would not address her shoplifting charge on Thursday, but said she would eventually turn herself in on the trespassing charge, adding, "I do know the law.”
“I love the NYPD. Hi, NYPD,” she said into a camera.
She also addressed the lion once more.
“I love you lion, hope they treating you right in the zoo. Know Myah love you. I didn’t mean to mistreat you or nothing,” Autry said. “I seen how you came to me. We connected."