Death Of Woman In Lion Cage Was An Accident, Family Says

DUNLAP, Calif. (March 8, 2013)--Relatives of a 24-year-old intern who was killed by a lion at a Central California animal park say they don't fault the operator and believe the facility followed safety procedures.

Investigators believe the 5-year-old male lion lifted the door of a partially closed feeding cage with its paw and then killed Dianna Hanson as she cleaned a bigger enclosure area.

A coroner said the women were killed instantly when lion swiped or lunged at her.

Diana Hanson's brother told The Associated Press the family is relieved that she didn't suffer and that the incident was just a tragic accident.

The coroner's report says other injuries happened after death.

Investigators have been focusing on the cage door that the 550-pound animal managed to escape through to reach the volunteer intern.


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