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Lion kills person at Central California animal sanctuary

  • This 2012 photo provided by KFSN-TV shows a 4-year-old male African lion named Couscous at Cat Haven, a private wild animal park in Dunlap, Calif. Authorities say the lion killed a female intern-volunteer on Wednesday, March 6, 2013, at Cat Haven, where the cat had been raised since it was a cub. The intern was attacked and fatally injured after getting into an enclosure with the lion, Fresno County sheriff's Sgt. Greg Collins said. (AP Photo/KFSN-TV) OUT KGPE, KSEE, KMPH, KFTV; FRESNO BEE OUT, VISALIA TIMES-DELTA OUT

SACRAMENTO — The Seattle-area intern fatally mauled by a lion at a Central California exotic animal park loved lions and tigers since childhood, "was absolutely fearless" around them and hoped to work at a zoo after her six-month internship, her father said late Wednesday.

"She was at ease with those big cats," Paul Hanson, a Seattle-area attorney, said of his daughter, Dianna Hanson, 24. "They liked her."

Hanson told The Associated Press that he dropped his daughter off Jan. 2 at Cat Haven, about 45 miles east of Fresno.

"It was just a dream job for her," he said, adding that she gave him a little tour and showed him the lion Cous Cous, which authorities said killed her.

Hanson said his daughter had worked with big cats before but told him she would not be allowed to go in the lion cage.


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