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MECHANICSVILLE, Virginia (WWBT) --Six chimpanzees living at a private zoo in Mechanicsville, Virginia will soon move to the Houston Zoo in Texas.

The chimps' owner, Curtis Shepperson, says he is sad to see them go. But he's glad the animals will stay together as a family.

Hanover County leaders say these chimps are a liability and they fear for public safety. Shepperson responded to reporter questions at the last meeting to decide the animal's fate by saying, "Do you have children? What would happen if you lost your children?"

County leaders told Shepperson get rid of at least four of them. On Monday, an organization called Chimp CARE announced the chimps will soon move the Houston Zoo facility. The most important part was keeping them together.