Family, zoo reach settlement in boy's mauling death



PITTSBURGH - The family of the boy mauled to death at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium and zoo officials have reached a settlement in the boy’s death.

According to a statement issued by Tracy Gray, zoo public and media relations manager, “The Derkosh family and the Pittsburgh Zoo have reached a settlement in the lawsuit involving the death of Maddox Derkosh.  Details of the settlement will remain confidential.  The Derkosh family and the Zoo request that the privacy of all parties involved be respected.”

Two-year-old Maddox Derkosh was fatally mauled when he fell into a wild African dogs exhibit on Nov. 2, 2012.

Maddox became the only visitor in the zoo's 116-year history to die when he unexpectedly lunged out of his mother's grasp, over the wooden railing, and into a net meant to catch falling debris and trash. He bounced from the net into the dogs' enclosure about 10 feet below.

The animals immediately attacked the boy, who bled to death from massive injuries.

Earlier this year, the zoo was fined $4,550 after federal officials determined there were “insufficient distance and barriers between animals and the public.”

“I just feel so bad for the family, especially the mother,” said Michelle Solkovy, who was at the zoo Monday. “You do still think about it.”