Lifestyle & Belief

Charla Nash, face transplant recipient, to get $4M from estate of chimp owner


Charla Nash, before and after. The undated photo on the right shows Nash after having received a full face transplant in May 2011 (Photo: Brigham and Women's Hospital / Reuters)

Face transplant recipient Charla Nash will receive about $4 million from the estate of the owner of the chimpanzee who attacked her in February 2009, according to documents obtained by the Associated Press.

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Sandra Herold’s 200-pound chimp ripped off Nash’s nose, lips, eyes and hands in a sudden attack outside Herold’s home in Stamford, Conn., Reuters reported.

In 2009, Nash’s twin brother sued Herold on his sister’s behalf for $50 million, Reuters reported. Herold died in 2010. Charla Nash will receive $4 million as part of a settlement agreement.

The Nashes’ lawyers said Charla Nash, now 57, blind and living in a nursing home, needs more than $4 million to cover her medical costs, the AP reported. She requires constant care and is awaiting hand transplant surgery, they said.

"The money that we have obtained for Charla is an insignificant amount in the scheme of things," the Nashes' lawyer Charles Willinger said Thursday, according to the AP. "It won't nearly address her medical needs and her other lifestyle needs, not to mention pain and suffering. That is why we will pursue the entity we think is most culpable, the Energy and Environmental Protection Department of Connecticut, for allowing Sandra Herold to possess the chimp in the first place."

In order to sue the state, the Nash family will need permission from the state claims commissioner, the AP reported. If they receive permission, they plan to seek $150 million in damages.

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