Safety protocols were in place at a California sanctuary for big cats where an 24-year-old female intern was killed Wednesday by a lion, founder Dale Anderson told reporters Thursday.
“We have been incident-free for 16 years since we opened in 1998,” he said. “We are cooperating fully with the sheriff’s department investigation and hope we can determine exactly what happened.”
Dianna Hanson was mauled by a 5-year-old, 350-pound African lion inside a cage at the Project Survival Cat Haven in Dunlap, California. The sanctuary has not released details of why Hanson was in the lion’s cage, but has said it would investigate whether safety protocols were followed.
Anderson teared up and couldn’t finish his statement when he began to talk about her.
“Our whole staff is … it’s just, it’s devastating,” he said.
™ & © 2013 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.