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Woman Mauled by Chimp Seeks Permission to Sue State of Connecticut

A woman who was attacked by a 200-pound chimpanzee at a friend's home in Stamford, Connecticut, in 2009 has asked permission to sue the state for $150 million in damages.

The request was made by 60-year-old Charla Nash, whose face and hands were literally ripped off by a chimp that had been described by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection as a "threat to public safety" prior to the day of the attack. The chimp was shot and killed by a Stamford police officer at the scene of the incident.

Nash has had to undergo a face transplant, a failed double-hand transplant, and numerous other surgeries as a result of the mauling.

She addressed the Connecticut General Assembly's Judiciary Committee at the Connecticut State Capitol on Friday, asking the legislature to pass a law that overturns a state claims commissioner's ruling in June that denied her request to waive the state's sovereign immunity from lawsuits.

Connecticut is one of only a handful states in the U.S. that still holds sovereign immunity, and it is the only state where the decision on whether or not to waive that immunity is made by a single claims commissioner.