There could have been mountain lion mayhem downtown Santa Monica had a three-year-old female feline — discovered by an office park janitor — decided to venture out into the bustling open-air shopping area known as the Third Street Promenade.
According to the LA Times, the big cat was spotted early Tuesday morning and authorities were immediately called. California Fish & Wildlife officials found an aggressive cat hell bent on escaping its predicament. A plan was quickly put into place to tranquilize the mountain lion and relocate it back to the Santa Monica Mountains, where 22 radio-collared mountain lions call home.
After the cat was hit with a tranquilizing dart fired by a CDFW officer, the feline attempted to escape the courtyard it was cornered in. Rubber bullets and a fire hose were used in an effort to keep the cougar at bay, but when the cat rushed a nearby officer in an attempt to flee into the busy urban area, he was forced to use his sidearm to kill the cat.
The citizens of Santa Monica — a socially progressive community — have mixed emotions about the cat killing. What are your thoughts? Did authorities handle the situation the correct way?