Coroner: Woman In Cat Haven Lion Attack Died Of Broken Neck - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Coroner: Woman In Cat Haven Lion Attack Died Of Broken Neck

Posted: Updated:
Dianna Hanson, the volunteer killed at Project Survival Cat Haven / Credit: Facebook Dianna Hanson, the volunteer killed at Project Survival Cat Haven / Credit: Facebook
FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KMPH) -

The woman who was attacked by a 4-year-old male lion at a Fresno County cat conservation on Wednesday died instantly of a broken neck, according to results from an autopsy completed on Thursday by the Fresno County coroner.

Dianna Hanson, a 24-year-old intern working at Project Survival Cat Haven in Dunlap, died quickly and did not suffer from wounds inflicted on her in the attack.

"This is a tragic case for us. There are indications that it was a very quick death and she did not suffer," said Coroner David Hadden.

Hadden estimated that the lion named Cous Cous weighed about 550 pounds and was capable of tossing Hanson around.

"This is very rare for us to see," Hadden said. "We have been prepared for something like this with a mountain lion, but for an African lion, it is very, very unusual."

Hanson, of Lynnwood, Wash., was inside of an enclosure when she was attacked by the lion, according to reports from the Fresno County Sheriff's Office.

By Thursday afternoon, it was not immediately known why Hansen was inside of the lion enclosure.

But her death has prompted investigations from several government agencies looking to discover why the incident happened.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife has said that Cat Haven, which is regulated by the same standards as circuses and zoos, has routinely passed annual permitting inspections.

Cat Haven, a 100-acre facility in the Fresno County foothills, has been open since 1993. It houses rare, large cat species such as tigers, cheetahs, lions and leopards.

In an interview with KMPH news partner Fox News earlier this year, Cat Haven president Wendy Debbas said the mission of Cat Haven has been to raise awareness.

"We strive to do is raise awareness and funding for issues and scientists who work with cats in the wild,"  Debbas said. "Cat conservation is different from some other animals cats learn how to hunt how to stay safe by being taught by their mother it's not an instinctual thing"

The Fish and Wildlife Department has a veterinarian that is performing an necropsy on Cous Cous.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Man Who Found Bag Of Cash Celebrates Milestone

    Man Who Found Bag Of Cash Celebrates Milestone

    The Fresno man who found more than $120,000 in cash and gave it back celebrated a milestone Wednesday night.Joe Cornell celebrated 6 months of sobriety!He also graduated from the Salvation Army Rehabilitation program.It's a program that helps both men and woman get off drugs and alcohol with God's help.In May, Cornell found a bag of money, which had fallen off a Brinks armored truck.Cornell says when he found the cash, his first concern was for others who could be hit with a loss.So, he gave...More >>
    The Fresno man who found more than $120,000 in cash and gave it back celebrated a milestone Wednesday night.Joe Cornell celebrated 6 months of sobriety!He also graduated from the Salvation Army Rehabilitation program.It's a program that helps both men and woman get off drugs and alcohol with God's help.In May, Cornell found a bag of money, which had fallen off a Brinks armored truck.Cornell says when he found the cash, his first concern was for others who could be hit with a loss.So, he gave...More >>
  • Crooks Cut Power, Enter Home While Family is Inside

    Crooks Cut Power, Enter Home While Family is Inside

    Your home should be your haven.But now, members of one Madera family are still on edge, after prowlers made their way into their home over the weekend--while they were inside.“We had just finished watching the LEGO movie, when we heard the first knock,” says Tswanna DeLaRosa, who was home with her 12-year-old daughter.Her father was asleep, upstairs. It was around 2:15 a.m. “Not even my friends knock on my door like t...More >>
    Your home should be your haven.But now, members of one Madera family are still on edge, after prowlers made their way into their home over the weekend--while they were inside.“We had just finished watching the LEGO movie, when we heard the first knock,” says Tswanna DeLaRosa, who was home with her 12-year-old daughter.Her father was asleep, upstairs. It was around 2:15 a.m. “Not even my friends knock on my door like t...More >>
  • Smoke From Fire Near Mammoth Pool Is Causing Problems

    Smoke From Fire Near Mammoth Pool Is Causing Problems

    The sky in and around Fresno is filled with smoke from a fire near Mammoth Pool that doubled in size Wednesday.
    More >>
    The sky in and around Fresno is filled with smoke from a fire near Mammoth Pool that doubled in size Wednesday.

    More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KMPH. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.