Needless to say the little guy didn’t make it. The tourists are described as two French-speaking men, wearing only cowboy hats and boxer shorts. The stunt was obviously intended to be funny, but provoked outrage from onlookers, who were as surprised at the men’s actions as was the hapless squirrel, who was friendly and accustomed to humans.
The matter came to the attention of law enforcement after upset witness Jonthan Hildebrand posted a video of the act on Youtube saying, “I did not realize what was happening until it was too late. I do not know who they are. All I know is that they were French.”
That being said, the suspects could also be ugly Belgian, Canadian or Cajun tourists.
The video shows one man lure an adorable little squirrel with snacks to the edge of the cliff. When it takes the bait, and goes to the edge he kicks it off. The average depth of the Gran Canyon is about a mile.
No one called authorities, but the video went viral and came to the attention park officials through social media sharing. They say it was taken somewhere in the Grand Canyon.
Officials do not believe that the video is a hoax, and say, if caught the men would face charges of disturbing or harassing wildlife, a federal charge that carries a sentence of up to six months in jail and up to a $5,000 fine.
Though they are searching for the men in the video, park rangers say that it is doubtful that they will be found. It is a large park true, but if enough eyes look for the suspects, they may yet be brought to justice.
An animal cruelty charged is not being considered, because it would require a post-mortem on the dead squirrel to prove that it had suffered.
Youtube took down the video, but not before it was posted by The Daily Mail, where it can still be viewed.