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In 2007, a tiger at the San Francisco Zoo was killed by police after jumping out of its enclosure and fatally mauling a 17-year-old boy and injuring two other people.
Cat Haven has housed Bengal tigers, jaguars and leopards as well as bobcats native to the area. The facility’s website says it promotes conservation and preservation of wild cats in their native habitats and offers visitors tours and educational outreach.
Anderson said Project Survival would investigate to see if the intern and the other worker on-site followed the group’s protocols.
"We take every precaution to ensure the safety of our staff, animals and guests," he said in a statement.
Paul Hanson said his daughter graduated from Mountlake Terrace High School and was a 2011 graduate of Western Washington University in Bellingham, Wash., where she majored in biology.
From her early childhood, "she had a thing for lions and tigers, especially tigers," he recalled.
During college, she worked at what Hanson described as "a sizeable estate" outside Bellingham that was home to exotic animals, including three tigers and a lion. It was there she learned to care for the cats, he said.
Associated Press writers Kathy McCarthy in Seattle, Garance Burke in San Francisco and Sue Manning in Los Angeles contributed to this report.
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