The mountain lion hiding behind the bush. Photo courtesy of Hollister Police Department.
The mountain lion hiding behind the bush. Photo courtesy of Hollister Police Department.

This article was written by BenitoLink intern Juliana Luna

Update Aug 27, 1:37 p.m.: Oakland Zoo announced the mountain lion died Friday afternoon. while in surgery. 


Authorities shot and captured a mountain lion in Hollister on Aug. 26 about 10 a.m. The mountain lion is being transported to the Oakland Zoo.

According to a police news release, at about 4:42 a.m., a resident on the block of 1400 Diablo Drive called to report a mountain lion on their front porch. Police requested the assistance of Fish and Wildlife, who dispatched two wildlife officers to the scene equipped with tranquilizer medication and an air-powered dart rifle.

According to the release, the police department issued a shelter-in-place order via reverse 9-1-1 call and social media posting, and evacuated the residence immediately adjacent to the adult animal. 

CDFW Information Officer Ken Paglia told BenitoLink that initially the mountain lion was not considered a threat since it didn’t act aggressive and that wildlife officers tried to tranquilize the lion to reassess it back to its habitat.

The police said following the failed attempts to tranquilize it, the mountain lion charged from the bush directly toward a police officer that was stationed in an effort to keep it contained.

“Fearing for the life and safety of the officer, two officers fired their rifles at the mountain lion,” the release said. “The mountain lion jumped a fence to a neighboring yard and retreated into another bush, where Fish and Wildlife delivered additional tranquilizer medication directly to the animal. After that medication was delivered, the mountain lion was successfully sedated and safely removed from the area.”

Police added that it was determined the mountain lion suffered at least one bullet wound to the abdomen. After a teleconference with a State of California veterinarian, it was determined that the animal would be transported to the Oakland Zoo for treatment.

Paglia said the mountain lion was tranquilized around 10 a.m. and was sent to the Oakland Zoo about 30 minutes later.

Oakland Zoo has not responded to BenitoLink’s call on the status of the mountain lion.

Police said they involved Fish and Wildlife out of care and concern for the mountain lion, and attempted to remove it from a residential area safely, but also knew this was a potentially life-threatening situation for residents. 

“We are enormously grateful for their assistance,” police said. “Ultimately, however, we could not place the life of the animal above human life, which is why the officers fired their rifles at the scene.”


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