Jennifer Fearing, California senior state director for The Humane Society of the United States, issued the following statement in response to news reports of a mountain lion who was shot and killed by police after wandering into a busy Santa Monica shopping area:
“We regret the death of this young mountain lion, as we do every death of a large and potentially dangerous wild animal who finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. Based on our knowledge of the steps taken by California Department of Fish and Game officials, we believe that the responding wardens acted with the intent to achieve a non-lethal solution to this situation and were taking reasonable steps to safely move this mountain lion to a place where he could be released. As we all now know, that desired outcome was not realized.
The Humane Society of the United States hopes that everyone involved will learn from this tragedy by deconstructing what happened and why, and ultimately improve on field response protocols where possible. For these reasons, we encourage the state to continue working with federal and local officials, mountain lion researchers and others to develop and improve standard operating procedures for responding to potentially dangerous animals in urban and suburban areas.”
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